Lesser Sisters and Brothers

The Franciscans are a world-wide religious family founded by Saints Francis and Clare of Assisi in thirteenth century Italy. Most Franciscans are members of the Roman Catholic Church.

Siena College was founded by members of the Franciscan Order of Friars Minor, a community of Catholic priests and brothers. “Order of Friars Minor” is a loose way to translate the Order’s official Latin title, which strictly translated means “Order of Lesser Brothers.” It is this identity of being “Lesser Brothers” – and “Lesser Sisters” – that characterizes all we do at the Franciscan Center for Service and Advocacy.

We are Sisters and Brothers

Sisterhood/Brotherhood is central to the Franciscan Tradition. It defines who we as Franciscans are. As St. Francis taught us, “Let no one be called ‘first’ among you, for you are all brothers and sisters.”

At the Franciscan center for Service and Advocacy, we are not sisters and brothers simply to one another. We are sisters and brothers to all people, for we are all children of God. It is in this spirit that we offer our service to, and advocate for the dignity of, all women and men.

We are “Lesser”

Today as in Saints Francis and Clare’s day, upward social mobility was the name of the game. “Be the best!”

Francis and Clare, however, followed a different way, that of Jesus who taught, “Anyone who wants to be the first among you must become the least among you, and the servant of all (Mark 9:35).”

At the Franciscan Center for Service and Advocacy, we serve our sisters and brothers first and foremost by sharing in their lives. We put their needs, their cares and concerns before our own. In this way, we show our respect for their inherent dignity as God’s children, by that humble service that sees all other people as “greater” than ourselves.