"Who are You, God, and Who am I?"
Franciscan Living is rooted in this fundamental question transcending the boundaries of space, time, race, gender, and spiritual practice. Like Francis of Assisi and his early followers, especially Clare, we recognize our origins and our kinship with all creation. Together we aim for authenticity of spiritual practice that manifests in the ordinary course of our daily lives and relationships. Through the spirituality of Presence, we touch the Sacred and come to know the blessing of who we are as an integral part of the web of life.
Francis of Assisi, Italy, abandoned his privileged life to embody the gifts of peace and love through a life of complete service. Through his fierce dedication & simplicity, he and his brothers & sisters courageously confronted the church of the day with a message that still applies almost 800 years later. The following prayer is largely attributed to Francis:
Clare of Assisi was a feminist before feminism existed. She spent much of her 13th century life resisting patriarchy in order to live the Franciscan way, supporting Francis and his brothers as well as establishing and guiding an order of Franciscan women that still exists today as the Poor Clares.
We are a diverse community of seekers.
Rooted in the Franciscan tradition of relationship with the earth and her creatures,
we embrace all of life as gift.
With compassion and creativity, we nurture opportunities for consciously integrating the whole of human experience into the spiritual journey.
We reach out to those who are spiritually or religiously marginalized, especially by lifestyle or income.
...Make me an instrument of your peace:
where there is hatred, let me sow love...
where there is darkness, light;
where there is sadness, ever joy...
Founder & Executive Director
Margie Will, a Sister of St. Francis, is the founder and Executive Director of Franciscan Living. She is a teacher, preacher, singer, and poet. She holds certificates in Spiritual Direction and SoulCollage® as well as a Masters of Theological Studies degree from the Franciscan School of Theology in Berkeley, California.
During her twenty-five year career working as a pastoral minister in Roman Catholic churches, eleven of those years in Sacramento, Margie noticed a striking trend: Even though scores of people inquired regarding affiliation with a parish every year, a significant percentage did not actually follow through. When asked why they chose not to affiliate, many responded that while they appreciated the social, charitable, and ethical aspects of affiliation, they were not able to join the church due to difficulty with ecclesial stances on marriage, divorce, sexuality, role of women, and a variety of other teachings. A number expressed the wish that there could be a place that fostered community, outreach, and spiritual questioning that embraced a diversity of opinion and practice. Thus, Franciscan Living was born.
"Franciscan Living is a unique opportunity for people with different realities to come together. There is no judgement, no guilt. I love the variety of people I meet through Franciscan Living who are longing for relationship with their divinity. In all of my work, including in organized religion, I’ve met people who feel that they are not accepted or worthy, but who are interested in a spiritual path."
Lewis Robinson, PhD., holds a certificate in the Art of Spiritual Direction from the Bread of Life Center located in Sacramento, CA. He has an avid interest in Jungian psychology and how that informs the life of the Spirit. Lew has been immersed in 12 step work; he facilitates a Men’s Spiritual Direction Group in addition to offering private spiritual direction.
Margie Will, osf, has been a practicing Spiritual Director for over twenty years.
She holds a certificate in the Art of Spiritual Direction from the Mercy Burlingame Center / Bread of Life Center Spiritual Direction Program and has a Masters of Theological Studies from the Franciscan School of Theology, Berkeley.