When I first began discerning with the Sisters of the Third Order of Saint Francis, I’ll admit, I knew very, very little about their Franciscan ways: Saint Francis loved animals, our new pontiff is Pope Francis and Saint Francis is frequently referenced in environmental and sustainability concerns; but not much else. Oh, and that they wore brown. (Well, maybe I knew a little bit more, but compared to now, after living with a Franciscan community for nearly a year, I knew NOTHING.)
Really, when I began discerning my religious vocation, it wasn’t till I sat down and did a “vocation quiz” online & communities were matched with my interests and desires, did I start researching the differences between the Benedictines, Dominicans or Franciscans or any other order.
Here’s one of my favorite stories about Saint Francis:
In this story, a fierce wolf was terrorizing the village of Gubbio, in northeastern Italy. Not only would it eat animals, even humans were attacked to satisfy its hunger. One day, while Saint Francis was in the village, the people told them of this ferocious beast and warned him not to leave the town’s walls.
Faithful in his Lord Jesus Christ, Saint Francis went out bravely to meet the wolf, armed only with the Sign of the Cross. When the wolf came running towards Saint Francis, with his mouth opened, Francis made the Sign of the Cross and ordered the wolf to come to him. The wolf obeyed and then lowered its head and peacefully laid down in front of the friar. Francis talked to the wolf, condemning the assaults, and ordered him not to hurt the people or any animals anymore. In exchange, the townspeople agreed to feed the wolf as long as the wolf lived. The wolf indicated his agreement by nodding its head and then giving its paw to Francis’ hand as a sign of their pact. “Brother Wolf,” as Saint Francis called him, never bothered the people ever again and was fed by the people until the end of his days.
You can find the 13th century story, as written in the Little Flowers of Saint Francis, here.
Are you thinking about becoming a Sister or a Nun? Would you like to know more, discuss your discernment or arrange to come for a visit?
Contact our Vocation Director: Sister Rose Therese, O.S.F.phone: (309) 655-2645mail: The Sisters of the Third Order of St. Francis House of Formation 740 NE Glen Oak Avenue Peoria, IL 61603-3100Email
Are you trying to reach one of our Sisters or find out about an event at our motherhouse, like our annual bazaar?
Call or write: phone: (309) 699-7215mail: The Sisters of the Third Order of St. Francis Motherhouse 1175 St. Francis Lane East Peoria, IL 61611-1299
Don’t know who to talk to about a healthcare related issue?
Contact: The individual facility or service line, listed here: http://www.osfhealthcare.org/facilities/ Or, Billing and Charity Assistance: OSF Patient Accounts & Access Center at (309) 683-6750 or toll-free at (800) 421-5700 between the hours of 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday.
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