The Reading of the MGC Rule at Retreat
The Rule of the Mercy of God Community is
based on the
Rule and principles of Saints Francis and
Clare of Assisi.
Since you have been chosen by God who has
given you this
new kind of life, and because of His
deep love and concern
for you, you should practice tenderhearted
mercy and kindness
to others. Don't worry about making a
good impression on them
but be ready to suffer quietly and patiently.
Be gentle and
ready to forgive; never hold grudges.
Remember, the Lord
forgave you, so you must forgive others.
Most of all, let love guide your life, for
then the whole
church will stay together in perfect
harmony. Let the peace
of heart which comes from Christ be always
present in your
hearts and lives, for this is your responsibility
privilege as members of Christ's body.
And always be
Remember what Christ taught and let Christ's
your lives and make you wise; teach them
to each other and
sing them out in psalms and hymns and
singing to the Lord with thankful hearts.
And whatever you do
or say, let it be as a representative
of the Lord Jesus, and
come with Christ into the presence of
God our heavenly Parent
to give God your thanks.
- We, as brothers and sisters in Jesus Christ,
seek personal perfection and to dedicate
our lives to the
service of others, do hereby form
the Mercy of God
Community, and adopt the following
as our Rule.
- We are a community of professing men and
women from various Christian traditions who
choose to live in the spirit of Saint Francis
and Saint Clare of Assisi. Although we each
identify with our own particular traditions,
we freely choose to worship and live together
prayerfully, peacefully, and ecumenically.
As an inclusive community, we welcome candidates
regardless of racial, ethnic or national
origin, physical ability, marital status,
previous religious life experience, affectional
orientation, work or professional background,
socio-economic status, or place of residence.
- Jesus heralded charity, love for God and
neighbor, as the
basic commandment which all His followers
to fulfill. So many of Christ's teachings
emphasize the importance of love.
Saint Paul speaks of
love as the greatest of all virtues.
In his first Letter
to the Corinthians, we are reminded,
"If I gave
everything I have to the poor, and
if I were put to death
for preaching the Gospel but didn't
love others, it would
be of no value whatever." Saint
Francis teaches his
followers that their mutual love
should exceed the love
of a mother for her own children.
Therefore, we shall
strive to reflect perfect love in
the communities in
which we live. Where charity abides
communities experience inner spiritual
growth of their
members and fruitful accomplishment
of their apostolates.
- We promise to live the Gospels of Jesus,
"in the manner of Saint Francis and
Saint Clare." To achieve this end, Francis
and Clare remain the principal inspiration
and example by their total commitment to
the Gospel. We consider this Rule an undeniable
means to the deepening of personal sanctification,
and a secure path to the fulfillment of our
- As a contemporary model of holiness, our
is committed to offset the scandalous
divisions among the
Christian Churches. We strive to
be the gentle presence
of true Christian community for all
the world to see
"How good and joyful it is for
brothers and sisters
to live together in unity."
The Mercy of God
Community seeks to respond, by example,
prayer "That all may be one."
- We shall pursue Christian unity; foster a
personal and community spirituality
based upon the
presence and uncluttered teachings
of Jesus Christ;
emphasize prayer and meditation;
denominational traditions; extend
the Gospel message and
other truths beyond parochial bounds,
and be prophetic to
the whole Church. United in Christ,
we shall extend
ourselves beyond the boundaries of
traditions in order to embrace the
priesthood of all
believers. In the Letter to the Ephesians
we are told,
"There is one Body, one Spirit,
just as you were all
called into one and the same hope
when you were called.
There is one Lord, one faith, one
baptism, and one God
who is Creator of all, over all,
through all, and within
all." This truth guides our
ecumenical spirit of
- We are committed to outward ministries of
persons for Jesus Christ; outreach
to the alienated,
disenfranchised, powerless, fallen
away, and despairing,
and to perform spiritual and corporal
works of mercy and
other good deeds of renewal, reconciliation,
Our dedication to Christ will be
reflected in our love
and service to our neighbor. Jesus
"Whenever you did it to these
my brothers (and
sisters) you were doing it to me."
- Governed by equality, collegiality, freedom
expression, and democratic process,
we reach community
decisions by consensus or majority
resolution. We adhere
to the belief that there are no religious
us, for all are servants among equals.
- We embrace our commitment to the virtue of
Poverty, as we
choose to be detached from material
possessions and to
use our resources and goods in the
best way possible. We
are confident that God will provide
the means by which we
will live and serve.
- Our commitment to the virtue of Chastity
capacity for human affection. It
transforms our passion
into total love of God and neighbor.
optional; if chosen, it provides
greater availability to
give ourselves more fully to our
neighbor with the very
love of Christ.
- In all matters, we pledge ourselves to the
Obedience, which is to Jesus Christ
and the message of
the Gospels. Through prayer and spiritual
Brother and Sister discerns God's
- A bold and total service to Christ requires
a unity among
our brothers and sisters. We place
ourselves under the
Holy Spirit, who inspires this Rule
and who guides its
interpretation and implementation.
With confidence, we
pray that God will continue to shine
the light of the
Holy Spirit upon us.
Brothers and sisters, I beg you through the
mercy of God
to offer yourselves as a living witness
holy and acceptable
to God, your spiritual worship. Do not
conform yourselves to
this age but be transformed by the renewal
of your mind, so
that you may judge what is God's will,
what is good,
pleasing, and perfect.
Adopted 6-25-93; Revised 11-10-02.