AN INVITATION & APPLICATION
to the Brothers and Sisters of Divine Mercy Region, for the Spiritual Assistant Program,Course 4, January 2019 – October 2021
- To review prerequisites of program
- To discern if the Holy Spirit is calling you to the role of Spiritual Assistant.
- To enter program after submitting 3 registration requests and approval.
- PREREQUISITES OF PROGRAM
You must be professed a minimum of five (5) years or complete your five years during the program to apply plus have held a formation leadership and/or council position
The principal task of the assistant is to communicate Franciscan spirituality and to co-operate in the initial and continuing formation of the brothers and sisters.
General Constitutions: Article 90.1
In addition to the principal task, the assistant is to stimulate the Franciscan spirit and be an example of Trinitarian spirituality in thought, word, and action.
An assistant is to be respectful and open with the brothers and sisters. S/he is non-judgmental when listening and clear when responding to issues without dominating the conversation.
Knowing our Rule and OFS documents are important but not enough.
CNSA News and Views: TAU-USA Winter 2012
Ideas and spirituality are good, but not quite enough.
PEOPLE SKILLS ARE VITAL
Those called to be a spiritual assistant are to be authentic, living our way of life every day and open to daily conversion, while “building bridges and animating peace.” “We cannot give what we do not have.
To be a spiritual assistant for an OFS fraternity requires a love of Jesus and a readiness to follow Francis and Clare of Assisi.
A spiritual assistant should be able to articulate and share their personal journey as a follower of Francis.”
~Life-Giving Union, a Course for Local Spiritual Assistants – page 1
- THE HOLY SPIRIT CALLS
a brother or sister to the role of spiritual assistant.
The applicant, in response to the call of the Holy Spirit,
commits to realizing and embracing that this “Vocation within their vocation in the Secular Franciscan Order” is lived in a joyful state of “perfect joy”.
- By serving as a pastoral visitor during fraternity visitations.
- By serving as an ecclesial witness during fraternity elections.
- By serving as spiritual assistant to a fraternity and their council.
- CNSA recommends that we not be appointed to serve our own fraternity. However, there are times when pastoral considerations make this necessary ~Franciscan Family Connections – page iii
- By serving as a member of the Fraternity’s Formation Team
- As a resource person
- As an educator
- As an evaluator
- By serving in vital cooperation with religious to make present the charism of their common seraphic father in the life and mission of the Church and society.
- By serving with a desire and plan to embrace personal ongoing formation and enrichment.
In addition, the applicant understands and agrees that the mentor and applicant mutually discern if the Holy Spirit has called him/her to the role of spiritual assistant.
THE APPLICANT MUST COMMIT TO PARTICIPATE AND BE PRESENT TO THE TWELVE FULL WEEKENDS OF FORMATION GROUP SESSIONS.
First Session (orientation): JANUARY 19,2019
First Weekend: March 22 – March 24, 2019
Diocese of Saginaw’s Center for Ministry
5802 Weiss Street
Saginaw, MI 48603
We are unable to offer make-up sessions during this present course. You may participate in the missed session or sessions at the appropriate time during the next course(s). The S.A. Team will consider an evaluation of the trainee after the October session. Before being commission as a Spiritual Assistant In-Training, you must complete the entire course and be approved by the Provincial Spiritual Assistant. The Internship phase of the Program is for ONE YEAR immediately following the Three YEARS of training and formation.
- PROCEDURES FOR REGISTRATION
- Ask your fraternity council to submit a letter with the following information to Linda Solis, OFS @ firstname.lastname@example.org or to her postal address listed at the end of this INVITATION.
- Your name, address and email address
- Your date of profession with the name, and city of fraternity that you entered,
- A profile of your active fraternal involvement during the last five years.
- Attendance at fraternity gatherings, fraternal activities, and the annual regional gatherings.
- A profile of your parish involvement during the last five years.
- Their recommendation of your suitability for the role of spiritual assistant.
PLEASE SUBMIT THESE RESPONSES BEFORE DECEMBER 1, 2018, TO LINDA SOLIS, OFS
- Submit written responses for the following requests.
- A “letter of intent” i.e., what are your intentions as a spiritual assistant?
- A resume of your religious and educational background
- Your marital status
- Signed approval of family members that blesses your frequent trips and committed service
- Your commitment to participate in the twelve (12), full weekend, sessions for 2019-2021
THE APPLICATION TO THE DIVINE MERCY REGION’S SPIRITUAL ASSISTANT PROGRAM
Complete and submit this Application to Linda Solis, OFS @ email@example.com, or to her postal address at the end of the INVITATION.
GETTING TO KNOW YOU
- Name & Birth date:
- Postal address – city, state, and zip code
- Preferred telephone:
- E-mail address:
- Marital Status: Single Married Name of Spouse Widow/Widower
- Names and ages of children in your home:
- Do you have any significant health issues?
- Please describe
- Does anyone in your home have significant health issues?
- If so, please describe
- Occupation: Full-time, part-time, or retired
- Positions and Responsibilities:
- Tell us about any background in Sacred Scripture, Religious Studies, r Church History you may have had.
- Have you taken a Diocesan-mandated three-hour “VIRTUS” training which includes a Background Check for a parish leadership position?
- If so, please include a copy of your certificate of VIRTUS training.
- If you are a catechist or teacher in a Parish, Parish School, or other, do you have certification hours and keep your hours up-to-date with the Diocese?
- If so, please include a copy of your certificate.
- Do you believe and profess all that the Catholic Church teaches and proclaims to be true? Or are there concerns/issues you have with the Magisterium and/or the teachings of the Church that we can discuss?
- Do you know and observe the OFS Rule, Ritual, and General Constitutions?
- Have you ever been removed from a position or office, professionally or ministerially?
- If so, when? Why?
- Have you ever been accused of a crime or indiscretion?
- If so, when? Why?
- Have you ever been a victim?
- If so, when? How?
- Please note that we have a “zero-tolerance” policy for abuse, harassment, bullying, or other, in accordance with our Franciscan First Order, Second Order, and Third Order Regular, and the OFS, which is in accordance with Diocesan Policies and Standards of Behavior, within The Catholic Church – Roman Rite.
- If so, when? How?
- Date of Profession:
- Name of Fraternity and location where Professed:
- Name of present fraternity:
- City and state of present fraternity:
- Have you taken a leave of absence?
- Length of time?
- Name(s) of previous fraternity(ies) of which you have been a member?
- Please list and include length of time with each fraternity
- Is there anything else you would like to share with us to get to know you better
- LEADERSHIP EXPERIENCES IN FORMATION & IN THE COUNCIL
- What experience and/or familiarity have you with the FUN Manual?
- What experiences and/or familiarity have you with the Divine Mercy Regional Formation Guidelines for Orientation and Initial Formation?
- Have you served as a local, regional, or national formation director or served on a local, regional, or national formation team or as a council member in these areas?
- If yes, please share your experiences.
- What training did you receive when you became a leader in formation council member?
- Name of parish church:
- Name of priest:
- How long have you been a member of this parish?
- How are you involved in your parish and diocese (e.g. daily communicant, choir, sacristan, altar server, lector, Knights of Columbus, Legion of Mary, and/or Worship committee)?
- Names and Numbers of those from your Parish whom you would like to name as personal references:
After reflecting upon the two articles below and pondering your prayer life, write and appraisal of your ability to let prayer and contemplation be the soul of all you are and do.
- As Jesus was the true worshipper of the Father, so let prayer and contemplation be the soul of all they are and do. Let them participate in the sacramental life of the Church, above all the Eucharist. Let them join in liturgical prayer in one of the forms proposed by the Church, reliving the mysteries of the life of Christ. OFS Rule: Article 8
- In all places and all times, it is possible for true worshippers of the Father to give him adoration and to pray to him. Nevertheless, the brothers and sisters try to find times of silence and recollection dedicated exclusively to prayer. General Constitutions: Article 14-5
- Please describe your personal experiences in discovering Jesus in your brothers and sisters, fraternity, personal apostolate(s), Church, Sacred Scripture, and/or Sacred Tradition.
Thank you for sharing yourself and your time. Thank you for filling out and submitting the INVITATION and the APPLICATION to possibly serve our region as a Spiritual Assistant. We need you!
Peace and All Good,
Fr. Jerome, Br. Loren, Patti, Marie, Kathy and Linda.
Approval of program:
- The Conference of National Spiritual Assistants (CNSA).
Linda Solis, OFS
Program Administrator and Regional Spiritual Assistant
4813 E. Boardman Rd., SW
South Boardman, MI 49680