CHARISM OF THE ORDER
Following the example and teaching of Saint Francis, the candidates are to be imbued with
love for the Church. Therefore, they should learn to respect its leaders and serve its
Formation in the Franciscan way of life must have a pre-eminent place for it fosters the
vitality of the Order.
formation in the religious life must be animated by the Seraphic spirit through Franciscan
studies, the history of the Order and the writings of Franciscan spirituality.
The purpose of formation in apostolic life is to prepare candidates in accord with their
capacities to announce the Gospel everywhere by their word and example.
This aspect of formation embraces studies which furnish academic and pastoral preparation
and skills. This formation may require the acquisition of technical and professional
training, keeping in mind the diverse areas of the apostolate existing within the Order.
Statutes: 11, 12
Candidates for the priesthood are to be prepared for pastoral and apostolic life with the
necessary courses of study. They should also have adequate practical experience according
to the directives of the Church and the particular needs of their Province.
addition they may also be assigned to apostolic works for suitable periods of time to help
them in preparing for the apostolic work of the Province.
Ongoing formation is a continuous process of growth in one's vocation. Every friar should
be engaged in the process of self-renewal through each stage of his entire life.
after the period of basic formation is ended, the friars shall diligently continue with
their own spiritual, doctrinal and practical formation, so that in their vocation they may
remain committed to their ongoing renewal after the example of Saint Francis.
moreover shall provide them with the time and help to accomplish this. (CN 661)
Friars in formation are entrusted to a Director who has immediate responsibility for them.
Directors of Formation should be carefully chosen and be mature, well-balanced persons.
They should be well prepared in doctrine and studies related to formation. They should
also have appropriate pastoral experience and special spiritual and pedagogical training.
The task of the Directors is to form each friar in the Franciscan religious life, provide
discipline and help him to mature as a person able to live the Gospel way of life.
General Statutes: 16,17
All friars are responsible for the formation of our candidates and should be closely
united with the Directors in spirit and action and cooperate with them by the example of
their lives and prayer.
Local Ministers shall see to it that the friars in formation have a competent confessor
available to them while permitting them to choose other confessors as well.
The Director diligently and prudently sees to it that each candidate has a spiritual
director who may also be the confessor for the fraternity.
convenient or necessary, a spiritual director may be appointed in the house of formation
as long as the personal freedom of each friar is preserved.
directors and their associates are not to hear the sacramental confession of those in
formation living in the same house unless those in formation spontaneously request it in
particular cases. (CN 985)