Our time in Denver will feature
  •  Dr. Brian McLaren, an author, speaker, activist and public theologian who advocates working with people of all faiths for the common good
  • Kerry Robinson, global ambassador of Leadership Roundtable, former member of the national committee for the U.S. Catholic Conference of Bishops’ Catholic Campaign for Human Development and prize-winning author of “Imagining Abundance: Fundraising, Philanthropy and the Spiritual Call to Service.”
  • our Facilitator, Dr. Bryan Froehle,  guiding the whole assembly as well as working with our  invited Franciscan Collaboration Exploration Group to explore the issues of future sustainability of our Franciscan organizations and the way in which we can insure a Franciscan voice responding to issues in our society and our church in coming years.
  • Patrick Carolan, past director of FAN, who currently serves as the Catholic Outreach Director for Vote Common Good, helping us focus on CLIMATE CHANGE as one important issue in our nation and in our world.  He is calling a Panel together to inform, inspire, and challenge us.
  • a 'Networking Room' where information about our 'invitees' will be available 
  • a variety of Franciscan vendors, artists, publishers - both local and national -
  • liturgical music provided by Cathy Tisel Nelson, an associate of the Sisters of Saint Francis of Rochester, MN, in person, with friends and family

If Christ deemed us worthy to live in these times, at this hour
- the only hour we have -
we cannot let ourselves be overcome by fear,
nor allow this time to pass without

living it
with joyful fidelity.

(Pope Francis, September 24, 2018)




Ordinary or Extraordinary?
Celeste Crine, OSF 

Liturgically, we are experiencing ‘ordinary time’.
We move along with few special feast days,
much like our ‘ordinary’ everyday,
even at times, ‘hum-drum’ life.
Unless there are birthdays, anniversaries or special events,
our life seems to ‘just keep moving’ at greater speed.

Will we pause, take a breath,
and realize it doesn’t really need to be this way?
In each pause, there is an invitation to
be more attentive to the Incarnate One present.
With open, receptive, willing hearts, Divine surprises
move us to a depth where our meeting with God and others
becomes extraordinary. 

Francis was graced with that recognition.
                            His life became praise and gratitude for all experiences                              
whether those of sorrow, pain or joy.

Soon our ordinary time will move into 
an extraordinary time within the liturgical year.
We move into Lent.
We can’t, like Francis, spend Lent in a hermitage,
however, our prayer may invite us to consider
“What is Ours to Do”? 
Coupled with the call of Pope Francis for immediate action
in the world for the world,
our Gospel action awaits us.

How extraordinary will the fruit of our prayer become
and be experienced at our Denver Conference,
“Called to this Hour”? 
Ordinary or extraordinary!




Friday, June 5th - Monday, June 8th, 2020

DoubleTree by Hilton Denver
3203 Quebec Street, Denver CO 80207



Sr Carol Woods, sfma,
Co-Executive Director

I have always found the natural world fascinating and meaningful. 

Brother Sun, Sister Moon, and all the Stars:  the subtleties and contrasts of light and dark in the sky, daily and seasonally, offer opportunities to both:  experience beautiful snapshots as well as enter into  gradual processes followed by immediate changes, like sunrises and sunsets.  All are worthy of my attention and reflection.
Mother Earth the lay of the land is the result of unseen forces of water and fire and air, either over long periods of time whose effects are still traceable or as present and powerful events that devastate or delight, like the Grand Canyon or an earthquake.
Sister Water:  the beauty and utility of water, in all its forms, separately, as well as along its continuum of change through transitions is simply amazing: water, steam, fog, snowflakes, ice crystals, ice:  this clear cycle justifies the presence of so many stages in our living and our dying.
Brother Fire:  this sometimes harnessed and directable energy can also remain at times, untamable and even destructive and devastatingly violent:  bright and powerful can be both good and evil, or one at a time.

I capture these elements as moments in time, snapshots that hold their essence and tell me something about beauty and balance, presence and absence.  I also experience nature as processes that I interact with, enter into, and experience repeatedly and variably, and find ways to describe them in ways that somehow reveal my own inner processes.

Sister Lilia and I flew from LaGuardia Airport, in New York, to Denver International Airport, in Colorado, recently to prepare for our June 5th – 8th Conference this year.  I treasure two images of our world from my window seat on both legs of this round trip.  

As we approached our landing in Denver, I saw that the mostly flat land was covered with a very thin layer of snow.  As we descended, on that cloudy mid-morning, I could tell where the roads marked off property lines and electricity service.  I could tell where the rivers and streams passed, and distinguished their turns in direction and the flow and noticed the impact of the water on the land.  I could see where crops grew in either concentric rounds or long, straight rows, and wondered why I saw both so closely aligned.  I could not stop observing this patchwork quilt, below us, made of lines of demarcation, touchable textures, and evidences of living and moving forces of life.

When we returned to New York City the next evening, I stopped reading long enough to open the window blind and try to figure out where we were.  We were approaching Manhattan, from the northwest:  dark bodies of water or parks were outlined by small lights, too many to count.  Beautiful skyscrapers gushed light through their forms and colors to be noticed and identified in this long line-up. Small and large necklaces made of beads of light, mostly red or white, moved both toward and away from each other, in all directions.  This scene captured my attention, as much as the rural scene had, the morning before.  I observed its layered levels of light, and pondered its movement, momentum, and meaning until we landed. 

And, obviously, I am still thinking about these two images.  What do they  tell me about our world? 
I noted sharp differences in intensity and activity between them, but found great beauty and interconnectedness in both.  I wonder, still, about this complementary contrast of cultures and our use of creation in these two bird’s-eye-views of our setting here in the States.  And I long to observe, reflect upon, and be open to the richness of both:  the questions that arise in my heart, and the values that I find fruitful in our Franciscan lives.

Our visit was a success!  We found comfortable and practical spaces for the Opening Ritual, the Panel on Climate Change, the ongoing Facilitated Process for the invited 'Explorers' of the Franciscan Collaboration Exploration Group, Keynote Speeches, and less formal meeting areas for groups, large and small, throughout our days together. Are you coming?   

Sustainability is a key theme:  and who does not want to sustain our natural world, our Franciscan lifestyle, our believing community, and our desire to live in communion?
All praise, my Lord! 
Laudato Si, Signore Mio!
Alabado Seas, Mi Senor!
Tumushukuru, Mungu!


Margaret Mary Kimmins OSF

We have two important topics to share with you this month:
At last year’s AFC, members of the Commission of Elected Leaders asked for more information on the the role and meaning of one serving as a Commissary for Religious Institutes. 
  • What is a Commissary? According to a resource page from Sharon Euart, RSM from Resource Center for Religious Institutes (RCRI),  "a Commissary is a person appointed to act as the canonical superior of another institute." ...
  • "Under what circumstances is a Commissary being used today?  Today, it is used to assist an institute which is unable to elect a full general government (superior general and council) from its members, but which wants to continue living according to its own history, identity and legacy." ommissAccording to a resource page from Sharon Euart, RSM from the Resource Center for Religious Institutes (RCRI).
  • Our Executive Committee recently met with Mary Hughes, OP, the Director of Transitional Services for LCWR at our ZOOM meeting, and have asked her to  present a video on its meaning, process and possibilities at our Denver gathering.
The ECCEL invites you to participate on this Commission.  Those who are currently in leadership, as major superiors or council members, are eligible.  We meet 5 to 6 times a year via Zoom and the meeting lasts about an hour to an hour and a half.  Some of our responsibilities are:
  • Contributing to the life of the Federation through the unique perspective of leadership,
  • Fostering the on-ongoing development of the TOR charism by mutual exchange of gifts among the Federation membership,
  • Providing a forum for leaders to deepen the TOR charism in light of their role as minister-leader,
  • Leading the Commission of Elected Leaders in their responsibilities in carrying out the reserved powers especially in considering its by-laws, finances and well-being.
  • The Executive Committee of the Commission of Elected Leaders would appreciate your consideration for membership on the Commission.
  • Please make your response to the Federation Office: or 929-207-3653.
We look forward to welcoming you, and your members and Associates, to the AFC in Denver!
We are together, in "the only hour we have ... living it fully with joyful fidelity."

Executive Committee of the Commission of Regions

Sister Camilla Wolfgram, FSCC

The Pro-Life activities of January serve as a daily reminder
that the dignity of the human person is a constant value for all human behavior. 
Pope Francis states: “Human life must always be defended from its beginning in the womb
and must be recognized as a gift of God that guarantees the future of humanity.” 
As we know, the foundation of all Catholic Social Teaching
is the inherent dignity of the human person, as created in the image and likeness of God. 

I believe that pro-life measures should include our treatment of others. 
The well-known adage states: “actions speak louder than words.” 
Being Christ-centered means living the Gospel at all times via our actions and our words. 
The well-being of each and every person, in every dimension of their lives,
is the priority goal to reach in treating all others. 
It is all about positively touching each person’s life
to help them grow spiritually, physically, mentally and emotionally. 

At the January Executive Committee of the Commission of Regions’ meeting,
the National Office staff reported on the planning progress
for the June 2020 Annual Federation Conference being held in Denver, Colorado. 
A press release was sent out on January 16, 2020 to various news agencies,
newspapers, and magazines, as well as to Diocesan Communications Offices,
and our Franciscan allies, and leadership in the Federation.
We hope that it is circulating to all who would be interested. 
As the press release stated:
“The AFC will throw open the doors to all those with a Franciscan worldview

and invite the discussion of solutions to pressing issues
facing the nation, the Church and the world.”

Our meeting continued with a stimulating discussion on options in providing webinar technology within the Federation,
as researched by Sister Carol and Sister Lilia,
at the request of this Executive Committee of the Commission of Regions. 
This Committee will propose new ways for the regions and their cluster groups
to communicate and share, stay in touch,
and be fed with our common values and resources,
in spite of distances between us. 
May we move together as one!


Please take note of the contact information at the bottom of this flyer.

We thank Friar Julian OFM for this guidance and initiative
through the Migrant Center of NY, Inc.

as a violation of HUMAN RIGHTS! 

And a Call to Care for the Earth and Each Other!

From the United Nations:

From Franciscans International:

From Pope Francis in Laudato Si: Care For Our Common Home:

We are happy to post this notice as requested of us!

Grants for the Study and Practice of Christian Mysticism

The Elizabeth Ann Bogert Memorial Fund for the Study and Practice of Christian Mysticism, *** administered by Friends World Committee for Consultation, Section of the Americas, makes annual grants of up to $1,000.

Recent Grants
A variety of proposals relating to Christian mysticism are given consideration by the Grants Committee.  Recently funded projects have included:
  • a grant to Pendle Hill, a Quaker retreat and conference center, toward the costs of a retreat on contemplative prayer; 
  • a grant to a program that teaches the art of 'holy listening' and spiritual guidance;
  • a grant to a young British scholar toward the publication of his monograph on Mysticism in Early Modern England;
  • and a grant to a poet working on a series of poems related to the Biblical figure of Mary Magdalene.
Proposals should be no more than two pages and include the following: 
  • a full description of the project, including an indication of how the project relates to the student and/or practice of Christian mysticism; 
  • the specific amount of money requested;
  • the way the grant will be spent;
  • other sources of funding;
  • plans for communicating the results to others. 
  • Two or three people who are familiar with your project should mail letters of reference directly to Kathleen McVey, (Professor Emerita, Princeton Theological Seminary), 272 Mercer Street, Princeton, NJ 08540.  E-mail inquiries may be sent to:
Application Deadline
Proposals and references for 2020 grants are due by March 1, 2020.   Decisions are made by the Grants Committee in May and grants distributed in June.  Recipients are asked to send a progress report within a year.

***  "... As a general guideline, the Bogert Fund understands the mystical element in Christianity to be that aspect of its belief and practices that relates to an immediate and direct sense of the presence of the Divine.  We encourage both experiential and scholarly exploration of this realm."
Thanks to our dedicated authors,Elise Saggau OSF and Kathleen Uhler OSF,
we now hold the story of our last fifty years in our hands... in one book! 

Remember the challenges and graces!  See familiar faces! 
Read about people who have formed and shaped our lives!

This wonderful resource is available for purchase at $15.00 each. 

TO ORDER, send note and payment by check to FRANCISCAN FEDERATION
                                                                                135 Remsen Street
                                                                                 Brooklyn, NY 11201

OR Call or E-mail:   sr Carol at / (929) - 207 - 3653
                                             OR sr Lilia at / (929) - 207 - 3654

May we remember all of our +brothers and +sisters
who have been committed to the values
of our Congregations,
who have accompanied us with love and prayers
on our Spiritual Journeys,
and who have served with us in mercy and compassion
in our Ministries,
and have left our hands
and gone to God
in this year

They have gone, like Saint Clare,
with the One they have known and loved.
to the place they have longed to be!

May our Lord continue to guide us in this life,
and lead us to where they are in the next!
Please see our website calendar, under 'Planning, '  for specific details about scheduled events.


Church of Saint Francis of Assisi
135 West 31st Street
New York, NY

Center of Renewal
Retreat and Conference Center
4421 Lower River Road
Stella Niagara, NY 14144
(only 10 miles north of Niagara Falls)

(716) 754-7376, Ext. 2

typically meets first Tuesday of each month at 7:00 pm.  Call for details.


3030 North Perry Avenue
Tampa, FL 33603

Centering Prayer Group
Eileen Strawser and Jill Biebel
Tuesdays, 1:30 PM - 3:30 PM
Centering Prayer is a method of silent prayer in which we experience God's presence within us.  This contemplative practice follows Thomas Keating's methods.  The group will meet weekly with Eileen and Jill.  If you have any questions 'and/or' are new to centering prayer, e-mail Eileen Strawser at OR Jill Biebel at  Please e-mail to attend. Donation will be accepted.

609 S. Convent Road
Aston, PA 19014

Visit our websiteat

We offer 3 registration options:
(US mail, Credit Card on or drop registration off at the Spiritual Center).
Deposit with registration form needed at time of registration.
Weekend Programs
Friday, 7:00 p.m. to Sunday, 11:00 a.m.
Unless otherwise indicated $190 residents (overnight accommodations)/ $140 commuters, $50 deposit

HIV/AIDS Caregivers, Spirit Alive
February 7-9, 2020 Bernadette Kinniry RSM, Br Bob Thornton OSA $70 (Sponsored Program)
“The Story of Martha and Mary”: Befriending Sisterhood Weekend of Prayer for Women
February 21-23, 2020 Clare D’Auria OSF
“Come Apart and Rest Awhile”: The Landscape of Prayer A Lenten Retreat Weekend
March 13-15, 2020 Clare D’Auria OSF
Standing at the Edge of Holy Week
April 3-5, 2020 Chris Koellhoffer IHM
Meeting Our Foremothers: Celebrating the Wisdom Women in our Lives
April 24-26, 2020 Mercedes Rojo OSF
Directed Retreat Weekend
May 1-3, 2020 Julia Keegan OSF Kathleen Gannon OSF, Mary Walsh OSF
Day Program 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. $40 (includes lunch) $10 deposit
Encounters with Jesus: Courage to be Whole
February 20, 2020 Mercedes Rojo OSF
Heightened Awareness
March 4, 2020 April Leffler
Day of Prayer: Journey of a Celtic Heart
March 9, 2020 Carmel Boyle Lenten Day of Prayer:
Learning to be Empty and fully Present to God’s Grace
March 11, 2020 Julia Keegan OSF
World Contemplative Spiritualties
April 28, 2020 Mini Wolf 9:00 am-4:00 pm
 Professional Day for Spiritual Directors: Nurturing a Discerning Heart:
Gifts and Capacities for Spiritual Discernment

May 1, 2020 Karen Doyle SSJ $50 (includes Lunch) $20 deposit
Weekday Retreats for Seniors 7:00 p.m. first night; 11:00 a.m. last day $80 ($10 deposit)
The Art of Forgiveness
April 21-23, 2020 Rose Mary Eve Holter OSF
Morning and Evening Program Options
($75 for series with $20 deposit unless otherwise noted)

BioSpiritual Focusing I: Inner Listening
March 4, 11, 18, 25, 2020 9:30 a.m.—11:30 a.m. or 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Mary Walsh OSF
Bio Spiritual Focusing II: Inner Listening
May 7, 14, 21, 28, 2020 9:30 a.m.—11:30 a.m. or 6:30 p.m.—8:30 p.m. Mary Walsh OSF
Morning, Afternoon, and Evening Programs
Women’s Awareness Salon: Seeing the Sacred in the Ordinary
February 6, March 5, April 2, 2020 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. —
$15 each session Facilitators: Marge Richards, Renee Eells Guest Presenters
Men’s Spirituality Group Gatherings
Tuesday evenings (Bi-monthly) September, 2019
Facilitator: Fritz Haas Free Will Offering
March 2, 16, 23, 30; April 6, 13, 20, 27; May 4, 11, 2020 7:00 p.m.—8:30 p.m.
Maryanne Williams $75 ($25 deposit) each series
“Dancing With the Spirit”: The Seven Joys of Our Lady Morning Series
2nd Tuesday of the month  February 11, March 10,April 14, May 12, 2020 10:00 a.m.—12:00 p.m.
Clare D’Auria OSF $15 Each Session
Centering Prayer Group
Third Saturday of each month Beginning September 21, 2019 through August 15, 2020
10:30 a.m. — 11:30 a.m. Julia Keegan OSF, Free Will Offering
Taize Prayer
Lenten Theme: March 19, 2020 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Andrea Likovich OSF Free Will Offering
T’ai Chi Chih
Eight weekly sessions beginning Tuesday, March 3, 2020 6:30 p.m.—7:45 p.m.
Christa Marie Thompson OSF $75 (series) $25 deposit
Celtic Spirituality
March 9, 2020 Carmel Boyle $40 (includes dinner @ 5:15 pm) $30 (program only, @ 6:30) If attending Day of Prayer, March 9 and Evening Program (with dinner) $65
Celebration of the Passover Seder
March 26, 2020 6:30 p.m.—7:30 p.m Presenter: Rabbi Nathan Martin Free Will Offering
Longer Retreats $475 (unless otherwise noted) $75 deposit
Triduum Retreat
April 9-12, 2020 $175 ($50 deposit)
Preached Retreat: TBA
May 18 to 24, 2020 Fr. Tom Hartle OFM
Preached Retreat: “Our God Tells Stories
June 12-18, 2020 Fr. Anthony Ciorra
Franciscan Solitude Extended Experience (at Clare House and the Hermitages)
June 12 to 18, 2020 Jean Ustasiewski OSF
Guided Retreat “A Spirituality on Film (Part 3): Creation of God’s Redemptive Love”
July 13 to 19, 2020 Michael Laratonda FMS
Directed Retreat
July 25-31, 2020 Mary Walsh OSF, Kathleen Gannon OSF, Theresa Firenze OSF
Guided Retreat “The Four-Fold Way”:
A Woman’s path to Wisdom Following in the Footprints of Jesus

August 22 to 28, 2020 Clare D’Auria OSF
T’ai Chi Chih
 Retreat August 16 to 21, 2020 Antonia Cooper OSF $425
Clare House Opportunities
Franciscan Solitude Experience
February 14-17, 2020 Jean Ustasiewski OSF $240 each ($50 deposit)
Contemplative Mornings
Second Wednesdays, through May 13, 2020 Jean Ustasiewski OSF $20 (due with registration)
Directed Retreat Weekends
April 24-26, 2020 Mary Walsh $190 ($30 deposit)
Guided Retreat Weekends
May 8-10, 2020 Jean Ustasiewski OSF $180 Weekend, ($30 deposit) $120 overnight $60 Day only
Mary Walsh, OSF Call 610-558-5310 for more information
Have you always wanted to make an extended retreat but cannot get away from home and/or job? God’s love is unconditional, merciful, personal and intimate. This retreat enables you to make the Spiritual Exercises as compiled by St. Ignatius of Loyola in the midst of your everyday life. You will be invited to open yourself more completely to the experience of God’s personal love for you. Extending over a six to eight month period, the retreatant meets once a week with the director and commits to one hour of prayer each day. Those interested must already be in spiritual direction for one year. An Advent and/or Lenten Retreat Series can be a part of the Retreat in Everyday Life.

Centering Prayer - Group Session of Quiet Prayer
3rd Saturday of each month from 10:30 - 11:30 AM  Cost:  Free will offering
A group gathering for those who have been practicing centering prayer.
In the space of one hour, there is a short reading or instruction, a 30 minute period of quiet centering prayer, a 10 minute walking meditation, and a 20 minute concluding quiet centering prayer.  We close with the Our Father. Prior to, or after this hour, there can be time for supportive discussion and encouragement around centering prayer for those who wish.  For those who have never experienced centering prayer,
the Franciscan Spiritual Center offers a Fall and a Spring one-day introduction to Centering Prayer.

Facilitator:  Julia Keegan OSF

Clare House
If you ever wanted to take as small group (not more than 6) away to a quiet space, surrounded by woods, for a nice retreat experience, you might want to explore Clare House.  It's a little fam house in the woods that is part of our Spiritual Center.  There are stairs, so it is not handicapped accessible.
To explore it further, or to make a reservation, call Sr Jean Ustasiewski at (610)558-5372.

If you are looking for a quiet place for reflection, you might want to consider booking one of our hermitages for a few days.  They are comfortable and right on the edge of the woods, so you can truly be one with nature.

The Canticle Gift Shop

460  St. Bernardine Street
Reading, PA 19607-1737

484-334-6807 / Fax: 484-334-6808

Make Me an Instrument of Your Peace:  Reflections on the Peace Prayer
A Silent Retreat with Fr. JohnPaul Cafiero, OFM

June 21-27, 2020
Sunday 4:30 pm through Saturday am Liturgy
Private Rooms with Bath
$500.00 for Bernardine Franciscans / $525.00 for Other Congregations

395 Bridal Path Road
Bethlehem, PA 18017

Tel: 610-867-8890

A Franciscan Place of Spirituality
4875 La Verna Road
Springfield, IL 62707

9263 West St. Francis Road
Frankfort, IL 60423       815-464-3880

St Francis Spirituality Center
200 St Francis Avenue
Tiffin OH 44883

Phone:  419-443-1485
Note:  Private retreat or individually directed retreats can be scheduled for 1-8 days in length. For more information regarding available directors, accommo-dations, or cost, contact St Francis Spirituality Center. Meditation classes and day-long retreats are also periodically available.  See the website for current offerings.

Sisters of St Francis of Sylvania
6832 Convent Boulevard, Sylvania, OH 43560

For more information, contact:  Sister Joan Jurski, 419-824-3528,
e-mail:  web:
Seeking the perfect setting for solitude, individual or directed retreat?
In the spirit of Francis and Clare, our lovely campus provides indoor space
and gardens for spiritual experiences on 89 peaceful wooded acres.
22 Overnight Rooms
2 Hermitages - reserve for a day, a weekend, or a week
Daily Liturgy at Queen of Peace Chapel
The Portiuncula Shrine Chapel, Grotto, and several other shrines
While on campus, visit All Good Things Gift Shop!

Oldenburg, IN


Joan of Arc:  A Saint for Our Time
February 8, 2020, 9:30 AM - 2:30 PM
Presenter:  April Boyle (Retreat Facilitator, Associate of Sisters of St. Francis)
$45 includes lunch
The life of Saint Joan of Arc is like no other.  Was she divinely inspired?  Was she mentally ill?  In the 2000+ year history of the Catholic Church, no other saind has been condemned and executed by the Church she so loved, and then canonized a saint.  Meet this unique saint (portrayed by Associate April Boyle) who will present the story of her life in light of the historical and cultural context in which she lived.  Come and see how St. Joan is a powerful role model and intercessor for modern times!

Lenten Series:  Holy Women Visionaries for Today
February 27, 2020 - March 19, 2020  6:30 pm - 8:00 pm    $15 per session/$55 for all

February 27th - Anne Buening (Pastoral Minister)
Dorothy Day
Join us for the first program of the Lenten Series.  Dorothy Day was an American journalist, social activist, and Catholic convert.  Day initially lived a bohemian lifestyle before gaining public attention as a social activist after her conversion.  She was a political radical, perhaps the best known radical in American Catholic Church history.  Come and experience her story!

March 5th - Christy Wesselman (Retreat Facilitator & Spiritual Director)
Catherine de Hoeck Doherty
Catherine de Hoeck Doherty was a Russian-Canadian Catholic social worker and founder of the Madonna House Apostolate and prolific writer.  She was a pioneer among North American Catholics in implementing the Church's social justice teachings and encouraging contemplation!  Come learn about 'poustinias!'

March 12th - Anne Buening (Pastoral Minister)
Sr. Madeleva Wolff
Sister M. Madeleva Wolff, C.S.C was a teacher, essayist, poet, and college administrator.  Through her creative ability and innovative practices, she made major contributions to Catholic education in her lifetime.  Her most significant legacy, the Graduate School of Theology at St. Mary's College, Notre Dame, Indian, allowed the laity and religious women to study theology.  Come and be inspired by her life!

March 19th - Christy Wesselman (Retreat Facilitator & Spiritual Director
Mirabai Starr
Mirabai Starr is a writer, teacher, and bereavment counselor who seeks to honor all the world's faith's traditions and contemplation.  Mirabai's first book, a translation of St. John of the Cross' Dark Night of the Soul  was released the same day her youngest daughter was killed in a car accident.  This experience and the connection between loss and longing for God is the ground of her spiritual life!


1001 Davis Street, Dubuque, IA

To register, call 563-582-3592

Centering Prayer
Monday, Third Week, please call to confirm.
Quiet, wordless prayer together followed by reading a piece related to contemplative prayer, contemplative worship, or other topics on contemplative living, which is followed with time to share our thoughts and reflections regarding the reading.
Facilitator:  Marilyn Dansart,
who completed a 3-year Spiritual Direction Preparation at the Franciscan Spirituality Center in LaCrosse, WI
Newcomers to the Centering Prayer Group are always welcomed!
No Offering Required  To Attend.  Donations Welcomed.

Monthly Writer's Group
Tuesday, Third Week, please call to confirm.
Facilitator:  Mary Potter Kenyonis Program Coordinator at Shalom. 
She graduated from UNI and is a certified grief counselor.  
Monthly writers’ support and critique group allows time to share up to two pages of writing with an opportunity for feedback and critique from other members.
Offering:  Donations Accepted
Registration is Appreciated, But Not Required.
Franciscan Way of Life
Fourth Tuesdays, 6:00 PM – 7:30 PM
Meets at Mt. St. Francis, 3390 Windsor Avenue, Dubuque, IA
Facilitators:  sr Carol Hemesath OSF & Sr Marci Blum OSF
This is a two-year program available to men and women of all faiths, religions, and traditions who want to learn more about Franciscan Gospel values and how to incorporate those values into daily life.  In the first year, participants learn about the lives of Saints Francis and Clare of Assisi, in medieval Italy, as well as the Franciscan values of conversion, poverty, and contemplation.  In the second year, the focus of the program is on the integrity of creation, peacemaking, the development of the Franciscan community, and the history of the Dubuque Franciscans.
For more information, contact Sr Marci by email: or phone: 563-663-3829.

116 Eighth Avenue Southeast
Little Falls, MN 56345

(320) 632-2981

3560 Highway 51 North
Arbor Vitae, WI 54568


300 E Fourth Street
Marathon, WI 54448



1001 14th Street, NW

Congregational Retreats:  Register by April 15, 2020

$450 per person (meals and lodging) OR $250 per person (commuter discount rate) per person per retreat
Questions: 507-280-2195 or

Redemptive Presence   Presenter: Joseph P. Chinnici OFM
Sunday, May 24 (6:30 PM) - Saturday, May 30, 2020 (12:00 PM)
Using the spiritual and experiential approaches of the Franciscan tradition, the retreat will focus on particular challenges that are given to us in today's world.  In this light, we are asked to embody God's presence in our midst and our correlative mission to be a redemptive presence in the world and with each other.  Consideration will be given not only to the context but also to the holy operations of God in ourselves, in creation, in others, in the saints, in all people, and in the Church.  We as followers of Christ and Francis are called to make that experienced presence of the Risen Lord alive and redemptive in the world of today.
Joseph P. Chinnici, OFM is President emeritus of the Franciscan School of Theology at the University of San Diego.  He is currently professor of history and tries to be useful in teaching, writing, giving retreats, and daily life.  Joe has authored multiple books on the history of the Church in the United States and numerous articles on the evangelical roots of Franciscan spirituality.  He has been teaching since 1976, served in provincial administration for eighteen years, and chaired the Secretariat for the Retreival of the Franciscan Intellectual Tradition for ten years.  Today, he is trying to slow down and reflect.

Pilgrims Along the Way of the Canticle:  New Stories and Lessons from Our Brothers and Sisters
Sunday, June 14 (6:30 PM) - Saturday, June 20, 2020 (12:00 PM)
We cherish Francis' Canticle of Creation as a window into his soul and song from his heart.  We have prayed and pondered it for years.  During this retreat, we will tenderly follow the footprints of our sisters and brothers, many of whom suffer from Earth's degradation, climate chaos and war.  We will listen anew to the Universe, to the elements, to our sister, Mother Earth, to the communion of all life, to vulnerable people, to our own good hearts.  We explore new stories and discover the Holy Spirit's dynamic and challenging movement in our lives and times.  What fresh lessons and renewal of energy does the Canticle offer us today?  The ever evolving mystery of God's love unfolds!
Sister Marya Grathwohl, OSF, served on the Leadership Team of her congregation for eight years.  In 1998, she founded Earth Hope, which provides programs and retreats to "Care, Protect, and Restore Earth."  She is currently writing a book that connects faith and spirituality with her passion for care of Earth, our common home.  It will be published by Riverhead/Penguin/Random House Books.  Marya earned a certificate of spiritual direction from the Hesychia School of Spiritual Direction, Tucson AZ.  She enjoys hiking, bird watching and visiting wildflower meadows in Montana with friends.
920 Market Street
La Crosse, WI 54601



Il Ritiro
Franciscan Retreat Center

P.O. Box 38 - 7935 St Francis Lane
Dittmer, MO 63023

Tau Center
Sisters of Our Lady of Perpetual Help

335 S. Kirkwood Road
St Louis, MO 63122


Franciscan Spiritual Center
2512 SE Monroe Street
Milwaukee, OR 97222

Phone: 503-794-8542   FAX: 503-794-8556

St. Clare's Retreat
2381 Laurel Glen Road
Soquel CA 95073 

San Damiano Retreat
710 Highland Drive
Danville, CA 94526


Franciscan Renewal Center
5802 E. Lincoln Drive
Paradise Valley, AZ

Sabbaticals:  Make the Franciscan Renewal Cener a part of your sabbatical.
Spend time in an atmosphere of quiet beauty and a space to develop a stronger sense of spiritual self-awareness and consciousness.
Rest and take time for reflection;  create your own program from our many workshops, courses and retreats.
We are happy to offer you a wide variety of options to nourish your mind, body and spirit.
Call 480-948-7460 to plan your stay.

Franciscan Federation of the Sisters and Brothers
of the Third Order Regular of the United States
135 Remsen Street
Brooklyn, NY 11201
Telephone:  (929) - 207 - 3653 OR (929) - 207 - 3654
Email: /
Copyright © 2020 Franciscan Federation, All rights reserved.

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