Ministerial Life

To announce and realize the good news of the Kingdom of God is the vocation of the Friars Minor.  This mission, before anything we do, is the reason for which we exist.  Our mission does not consist in living for ourselves, but for others.  Our cloister is the world, and our mission is making the Kingdom of God known.  This is the salvation that we ask and desire for all people:  "May the Lord give you peace."

Our Friar Ministries
Mendicant Ministry
Today, mendicant ministry in our province is our way of talking about all the initiatives taken on by individual friars that connect them to the poor in places beyond the tried and true.  For instance, hospital emergency rooms, American Indian villages, foreign missions, and back alleys of major cities—places where the Franciscan robe, or even the Catholic Church are not readily understood.

Retreat Ministry
"Come away and rest awhile."  These words of Jesus in the Gospel of Mark have often served as the motto of the retreat ministry initiated by the friars in the Province of Saint Barbara over 60 years ago.  Prayer and reflection in peaceful and beautiful surroundings has represented "rest," which is not quite what it might seem: a passive escape from the activity of the world.  On the contrary, the "rest" represented by retreat ministry is the seedbed of enlivened, renewed, and reinvigorated service that can lead to a radical challenge to love God and neighbor.
Parish Ministry
For Franciscans, the parish is the hub of a Church now challenged to promote a hope-filled vision for Catholics seeking to enliven and pass on the treasure of a religious and spiritual heritage that is "ever ancient, ever new."  This is where it all comes alive:  community, singing, festival, and the everyday ups and downs of the people of God.

Outreach Ministry
Outreach ministries in the Province of Saint Barbara are the works specifically focused on reaching out to the poor and marginalized.  The province's largest outreach centers are located in San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Guaymas, Sonora (Northern Mexico).  Today these three ministries: St. Anthony's Foundation, St. Francis Center, and Casa Franciscana together serve over 1,000,000 meals a year.  St. Anthony's alone serves on average 3,000 meals a day.  It's not just meals, but also free medical care, social services, free clothing, employment services, and drug and alcohol rehabilitation.