Fr. Francis Maple, O.F.M. Cap. has already made a name for himself as "The Singing Friar", but to the parish of St. Francis of Assisi in Chester (England), he is also something infinitely more important: a much-loved parish priest with an enormous dedication to his parochial work. As a Capuchin Franciscan, there is one aspect of his work which is particularly close to his heart, and that is preaching the gospel. No matter how busy his schedule - and it often means an eighteen hour day - he devotes time every day to writing his sermons.
Styles of preaching vary considerably, just as for some the preparation and delivery of the weekly homily is a labour of love, for others an onerous task. In the nineteenth century, it was customary to preach "off the cuff", a method which produced a few fine orators but also a great many shapeless discourses. It was Cardinal Newman who saw the greater value of sermons which were properly prepared and constructed.
Churchill Systems' new CD-ROM contains a wealth of contemplations and homilies which, while simple and direct, are the result of inspiration coupled with Father Francis' careful preparation.
There is a text for each Sunday and Holy day in the three year cycle, together with reflections for every day of the year, any of which can be used to provide a starting point for one's own homily. Alternatively, the material may be used for inclusion in the weekly bulletin or as the basis for discussion groups. The CD also includes the complete readings from the Jerusalem Bible, NRSV and NAB and these can be either viewed or printed out at will. The homilies may be used in their entirety, printed out or exported into a word processor,
The desire to "spread the word" is the motive for everything that Father Francis does, and it is the reason for publishing this collection of fine homilies. They are literally a labour of love. Those who have been privileged to hear him preach the sermons agree that they deserve to reach a wider audience. Many will find on this CD inspiration, encouragement, comfort and a good deal of material for discussion.
Samples are posted periodically to my sermon pages. To view a descriptive page about the CD, please see Churchill Systems. Will work on XP computers.