What is the Secular Francican Order? It is a new way of real growth in the Christian life by really knowing and and really enfleshing the Gospels in ordinary daily life. The Fransican movement for lay people was founded bt St. Francis of Assisi. Earlier, it came to be known as the Third Order of St. Francis; it is now called the Secular Franciscan Order. It has survived time and it has grown and flourished. It will continue to do so because it is built on the timelessness of Christ in the Gospels, the keystone, the solid foundation. Because of this, it too is timeless, yet up-to-date.
It is for everyday Christian Catholic people who have a spark of desire to possess light where there is darkness.
One may hope that through Franciscan instruction in and the practice of the Gospel way of life, he or she may burn with the love of God, oneself, others and nature... and to be reconciled with as Francis was. To serve more completely in everyday life out of love as Francis did.
One need not be "holy" or close to beatification to enter such a course of instruction. But one must at least have the desire to know and to serve God and others more fully. Each must be ready and willing to make some sacrifice of time and effort to attend periodic, informal meetings for instruction and to spend some time in study, prayer, and reflection.
Franciscans learn how to grow to be one with Jesus out of love...to grow in becomimg a servant with Jesus through penance and the joy of self-sacrifice... to grow in being one with Jesus through the peace and joy of reconciliation and renewal. The Peace Prayer of St. Francis states in part, "..it is in giving that we receive, it is in pardoning that we are pardoned, and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life."
Membership requirements are realistic and practical. "I am the light of the world", says the Lord, "the one who follows me will have the light of life"(John 8:12) Francis reflected this light brilliantly. So do other Franciscans when they draw closer to the source of the fire. Your local community fo Franciscans (the Secular Franciscan Fraternity) will be happy to provide you with further enlightenment. Call Patti Giagrande for more information.