Young men listening to Friar John Soh sharing his faith and vocation during the Chill Out with St Francis session.

The Franciscan friars are inviting young men to learn more about their order’s way of life in a series of fellowship and community prayer sessions.

The meetings, called Chill Out with St Francis, started on Feb 27, and are held once every two months.

The friars invite aspirants, aged between 18 and 35 years, to chat with the friars over dinner.

The meetings, held on the grounds of Church of St Mary of the Angels, is followed by communal night prayer and a sharing by a friar about his faith and vocation.

Friar Derrick Yap, who is part of his community’s vocation promotion team, said the sessions are to “get people interested in the Franciscan Religious life”.

“Those who are serious will meet the vocation director more regularly and perhaps discuss entry options and interviews,” he said.

For those who do not join the Franciscans, they would still be able to learn about the Franciscan brotherhood and the order’s spirituality, he added.

Friar Derrick said that Franciscan spirituality is “caught” from interaction with the friars rather than “taught”.

Franciscan spirituality is “very broad” as St Francis stood for many things. It could be care for creation, reconciliation, peace, living the Gospel life, preaching, wanting to be contemplative and active.

Each friar would also have his own unique connection with St Francis, said Friar Derrick. Therefore speaking to different friars will help people get a different understanding of who St Francis is, he explained.

Gabriel Ng, 18, who attended the Chill Out session for the second time on April 17, said the sessions help people discern their vocations.

Samuel Ong, 16, who attended the session for the first time that day, said he found the evening’s sharing by Friar John Soh meaningful.

The next Chill Out session is scheduled for June 26.

By Darren Boon
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