What the Church and Secular Franciscans
Offer to Youth and Young Adults
In Sons and Daughters of Light: A Pastoral Plan for Ministry with Young Adults, our Bishops respond to the question, “What can the Church offer to fulfill the spiritual hunger of young adults?” Their answer is “The Church can offer them a vision of life based on a faith that calls each of them to holiness, community, and service.”
The National Franciscan Youth and Young Adult Commission has spent the last several years developing a plan to help individuals, fraternities, and regions step into the world of youth and young adults in order to co-operate with this three-fold mission the Bishops have provided. As Secular Franciscans we are uniquely qualified to undertake the task as individuals and fraternities.
A life based on faith is a call to…
Secular Franciscans seek holiness not only by living gospel to life and life to gospel, but by offering others, especially young people, the opportunity to consider the same. We envision journeying with youth and young adults as they develop relationships with Jesus Christ and discern their purpose in life.
By our witness and through prayer experiences, formation, and social justice action young people are invited to say “yes” to a Christ-centered life.
For Secular Franciscans, community means the commitment to and benefits of vibrant fraternity life. A fraternity is considered a family. Our younger brothers and sisters are welcome to join us or to form their own youth fraternity (YouFra). Either way, young people are a treasure—a vital part of our Church that we don’t want to lose. They deserve our time, hospitality, friendship, and support as they choose a life of faith.
Service is a large part of our Franciscan charism. Most young people are interested in social justice and care for creation. They have a passion for change and a strong desire for action. Inviting young people to participate in our apostolates, or joining with young people in theirs, is a dynamic way to reach out to our younger generation.
Our OFS Rule
Pope Francis wrote in Christus Vivit:The Apostolic Exhortation to young people(CV), “Christ is alive! He is our hope, and in a wonderful way he brings youth to our world, and everything he touches becomes young, new, full of life.”(CV,#1) Our Rule calls us to “foster communion,” with our young people and “to adopt appropriate means for growth in Franciscan and ecclesial life.”(art. 24) The Franciscan Youth and Young Adult Commission is working hard to provide support for this effort. We invite you to join us in this adventure and are hopeful the fruit of our labor will be the gathering of hearts that are new and full of life!
Blessings on your journey with young people,
from the National Franciscan Youth and Young Adult Commission.