Dear sisters and brothers in our Lord and His servant Saint Francis,
May the Lord give you His peace!
I am delighted to address these words of blessing and greeting to you as you explore our Regional Website. There are a little over 200 of us Secular Franciscans who comprise our Franciscans of the Prairie Regional Fraternity of the Secular Franciscan Order. We are laywomen, laymen or members of the diocesan clergy who have made a public Profession of the Rule of life given to us by St. Francis and approved by the Catholic Church. We have committed ourselves to living out the grace ongoing conversion in our lives, always “going from Gospel to life and life to the Gospel” (The Rule of the Secular Franciscan Order, article #4). We live in our homes and with our families while gathering on a regular basis with our local Franciscan communities which we call Fraternities. All told, there are 8 such local Fraternities in our Region within the Dioceses of Springfield and Peoria, Illinois.
As you visit these pages of our Regional Website, you will get a sense of who we are, what we do, and the Gospel values that animate and guide our lives as followers of Jesus Christ in the manner of St. Francis of Assisi. As the Secular branch of the Franciscan Family in the Church, our life parallels and complements the life lived by our vowed Religious Franciscan Sisters and Brothers. Our process of vocational discernment and initial formation which prepares us to make a life-long commitment as Franciscans is as important as the formation undergone by the other branches of the Franciscan Family.
Please take a moment now and ask yourself this question, “What drew me to visit this Website?” Perhaps you are just curious about us – and that’s great! You are most welcome. But perhaps you have felt a stirring within you, an attraction to St. Francis, a desire to live a deeper, fuller, richer spiritual life. If so, we can help you to discern whether or not God may be calling YOU to explore the Secular Franciscan way of life.
In closing, please feel free to contact us using the link provided on this Website, and please let us always remember to pray for one another.
With a brother’s love in Saints Francis and Clare,
Deacon Dave Ream, O.F.S.
Regional Minister (2016 – 2019)
T Ministrare, non ministrari