Beginning The Process
If you have opened to this page, you are wondering what it takes to become an Associate of the Sisters of St. Francis of Mary Immaculate.
The process of becoming an Associate is a journey of mutual knowledge-gathering, self-discovery and prayer. Once you have connected with the Director of Associates, she will help you identify a Companion—a Sister or Associate–who will walk with you during your orientation and formation. You and your Companion will meet to review the mission and charism of the Congregation, explore Franciscan values and service, identifying ways of being Franciscan, while living fully in the lay world, to determine if you want your spiritual journey to be connected with the Joliet Franciscans.
What are the Steps One Takes to become an Associate?
There are three phases in becoming an Associate:
Initial Orientation: During this phase you contact the Director of Associates, complete an application form and respond to a series of reflection questions. You interview with the Director of Associates so that each of you can get a better sense of what you are seeking and whether this journey to be an Associate feels right.
Reflective Transition: In this second phase, you, now a candidate, begin discernment with a Companion—a Sister or Associate who will journey with you. For several months, you and your Companion will explore what being a Franciscan Associate means. Mid-point in your discernment, you will be asked whether you wish to continue and, if so, you will write a letter of intent to the Congregation president.
Developmental Formation: At the third phase, when you are accepted by the Congregation, you continue to meet with your Companion. You are invited to attend many of the Associate and Congregational events and begin to receive Congregational mailings. As you prepare for your formal commitment, you compose a statement that describes how you wish to journey with the Joliet Franciscans.
When your commitment has been made you will continue to journey with the Sisters and Associates in prayer and attending events, as you are able.
You will find that becoming an Associate helps you live more meaningfully who you are and supports what you do. Becoming an Associate adds deeper meaning to your life and guides you purposefully forward to being the spiritual person you wish to be.
For more information you can email Darcy Mason, Director of Associates at: firstname.lastname@example.org, or write/call her at: 1433 Essington Road, Joliet, IL 60435-2873: (815) 725-8735×128.