A year and a half ago, I recognized almost nobody who came to the door at the Franciscan Spiritual Center. And many wondered who was this man who was opening the door and then when they found out, they wondered what I would be like as the Director.
Now it is different.
I know names and faces and we have begun to have a relationship and we are all linking, connecting, growing in this Franciscan-infused community. I have a warm feeling when I see people I now know and I sense it is mutual. A lot of smiles are shared.
St. Francis believed in welcoming all as sister or brother and that spirit pervades this place. Newcomers are welcomed and so are old friends. The community is elastic in that way – stretching to welcome and include. If you have not been here in a while, come on back. If you only visit us on social media from afar, welcome. If you have been wondering about the way of St. Francis and this ministry in Milwaukie, come on by.
Community can be hard work. It takes listening to one another, letting another’s thoughts and experience challenge or inform your own. It happens over cups of tea or shared meals. It happens as we pray together or walk the labyrinth. It happens as we work on common projects and appreciate the different gifts and skills people bring. It happens as we make time for another. Community is not only time and effort, but it sustains, delights and enables us to grow and offer our best to the world and to one another.
Franciscan Spiritual Center is a place for entering into a deep peace or being encouraged to take the next step for creating peace in our communities or world. It is a place to experience the Holy One’s Presence. And we are a place which helps create community, expand community and link us to communities of compassion and inclusion. Welcome.
Peace, Presence, Community – our Franciscan motto.