Saint Bonaventure Province
Midwest United States
The worldwide Franciscan Order was founded by St. Francis of Assisi in 1209. One of five North American jurisdictions, our Chicago-based Province was established in 1939. St. Francis’ simplicity, love for the Eucharist, and devotion to the Virgin Mary remain at the heart of our Province. This solid Catholic foundation unifies the friars as they live their 800 year tradition of Gospel fraternity and deep love for the Church.
Our Franciscan identity is further shaped by the life and mission of St. Maximilian Kolbe, our confrere who became a "Martyr of Charity" in Auschwitz (+1941). We strive to further his mission of evangelization by promoting Marian Consecration and expanding Catholic media to build up the "Culture of Life."
We live our vocation together as we serve in parishes, centers of spirituality, and international friaries. Our friars are immersed in the life of the local Church as we celebrate the richness of our liturgical traditions. Our Catholic and Franciscan heritage also focuses our ministry of reaching out to those in need through sacramental, spiritual and practical service.
Each friar contributes to the mission of the Province as he engages his many God-given talents and skills. Preaching, teaching, nursing, counseling, writing, creating graphic design and developing media resources, cooking, tailoring, and sharing musical and artistic abilities are just some of the ways we are helping to build up the Kingdom of God.
Hail, O Lady,
Mary, holy Mother of God,
Who are the Virgin made Church,
chosen by the most Holy Father in heaven
whom he consecrated with His most holy beloved Son
and with the Holy Spirit the Paraclete,
in whom there was and is
all fullnesss of grace and every good.
-St. Francis of Assissi