Fraternity Documents

Reflections on the Secular Franciscan Rule, compiled by Fred Schaeffer, OFS
Reflections on Rule.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [95.0 KB]

In a chapter found in the FUN formation manual, “Our Identity as Secular Franciscans” by Anne Mulqueen, OFS, the following comments are found:


“The OFS General Constitutions, further define our status in Article 1.5 and states:

The Secular Franciscan Order is a public association in the Church. It is divided into fraternities at various levels: local, regional, national, and international. Each one has its own juridical personality within the Church.


“The Secular Franciscan Order differs from other Third Orders in significant way, and

it is important that we be aware of the characteristics specific to the OFS.


The OFS shares a common founder with the First and Second Order—

St Francis of Assisi.


The OFS is not associated or affiliated with the First Order or TOR—it is

autonomous and self-governing.


The OFS shares in vital reciprocity with the other branches of

the Franciscan family and has equal dignity.


The OFS was given the same charism and mission as the other

branches of the Franciscan family. In our secular state, we, too,

continue the mission of St. Francis to rebuild God’s Church.


Our Rule and Constitutions are approved by the Holy See and not by the

Ministers General of the First Order and Third Order Regular.


Members of other third orders may belong to more than one third orders.

Secular Franciscan may not.


All OFS fraternities that are Canonically Approbated (the goal of all fraternities) function under a special relationship with friars. "Altius moderamen" is a Latin term used in Canon 303 to mean that the friars of the First Order and Third Order Regular are to guarantee the fidelity of the SFO to the Franciscan charism, communion with the Church and union with the Franciscan Family, values which represent a vital commitment for the Secular Franciscans. (General Constitutions of the Secular Franciscan Order, Article #85.2)

Formation Manual of the Secular Franciscan Order - USA

 Do not print all at once, it's close to 500 pages!

Formation Manual of the Secular Franciscan Order - USA
FUN Manual.pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [15.5 MB]

A Gift of a New Life
A Biography
by Fred Schaeffer, OFS 2019

Secular Franciscan Order
Ordo Franciscanus Sæcularis

Divine Mercy Fraternity

Vero Beach, FL


Term expires: 2/10/2022

Fred Schaeffer, OFS

Helen Caldarone, OFS

Mary "Jean" McGovern, OFS

 Jack Reddy, OFS


Formation Director: 
Donna Haro, OFS



 Joanne Giordano, OFS


Acting Spiritual Assistant:
Deacon Richard Blake, OFS


Webmaster & Contact:
Fred Schaeffer, OFS

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