STONEVILLE, N.C. — St. Francis Springs Prayer Center here is planning a full autumn of programs, including sponsoring a play written by Louis Canino, OFM, director of the center.
In addition, the center welcomes John McDowell, OFM, to the staff as new director of the Franciscan Center in Greensboro, approximately 40 minutes from the center. He arrived at the center in July, from his former ministry at St. Francis University in Loretto, Pa.
Louis’ play, “Francis — Everyone’s Saint,” debuts the weekend of Oct. 2 to 4 at the Carolina Theater in Greensboro, N.C. The play is part of the center’s celebration of the 800th anniversary of the Order. Performances are Oct. 2, 8 p.m.; Oct. 3, 2 and 8 p.m.; and Oct. 4, 2 p.m. Tickets are $20.
From Oct. 30 to Nov. 1, the center’s Justice & Peace Weekend takes place. Held several times a year, the experience includes creative presentations within a framework of prayer to emphasize the social justice message of the Gospel and the Church’s social teaching. The cost is $60, offset, in part, by scholarship funding from Holy Name Province Benevolence Trust.
In November, the center will host a weeklong immersion experience in El Salvador. The program, which costs $995, shares how children in El Salvador live; the stories are often described as life-changing.
“Trips like these create an awareness of the plight of individuals living in third-world countries,” said Paul Cronin, the center’s development director.
Advent is celebrated at the center with Taize music and prayer, beginning Dec. 6 at 3 p.m. Cost is $20, including dinner.
From Dec 6 to 8 and 11 to 13, it is “Christmas at the Springs.” The program encourages participants to keep Christ in Christmas and throughout the New Year by spending two consecutive nights in comfortable surroundings with six home-cooked meals. “Give birth to Christ daily in your life,” the center’s Web site says, recommending to “give this as a Christmas gift to a loved one.” Cost is $95 per person, double occupancy. Reservations are limited to 34 people.
It is also possible to celebrate New Year’s Eve at the center with prayer, fellowship, dinner, Eucharist, midnight brunch and breakfast. Cost is $75 per person.
In the next few months, the center will dedicate its new outdoor chapel and friary, with plans to build three hermitages on the grounds. The center is preparing a dedication of 20 paintings by Pedro Subercaseux depicting the life of St. Francis. The works are displayed in the center’s residential wing.
For more information, visit the center’s Web site, or call 336-573-3751.
— Wendy Healy, a Connecticut-based freelance writer, contributes frequently to HNP Today.