Summer Courses at FST and SBU

Jocelyn Thomas Around the Province

Editor’s note: As this story was being finalized, the HNP Today staff learned that the Franciscan School of Theology is relocating this summer. Details will be provided in a future article..

A variety of programs and courses will be offered this summer at the Franciscan Institute and Franciscan School of Theology, the two major Franciscan schools in the United States. All those interested in strengthening their Franciscan knowledge at a historic setting are invited to register for the programs that will focus on St. Francis of Assisi, lay Franciscans, the Poor Clares, American Franciscanism at its beginning, mendicant theology, and a conference bringing together Dominicans and Franciscans.

Programs at the Franciscan Institute
In Western New York, the Franciscan Institute at St. Bonaventure University has scheduled a range of programs for June and July.

“This summer, we’re presenting the latest research on every dimension of Franciscan life,” said Fr. David Couturier, OFM Cap., executive director of the Franciscan Institute and dean of St. Bonaventure’s School of Franciscan Studies.

The schedule includes Professor Catherine Mooney, who will explore her latest book on Clare of Assisi; Darleen Pryds, who will present research on lay-Franciscan women and men whose stories have been suppressed for centuries, and Dominic Monti, OFM, who will offer insight into American Franciscanism from its early beginnings.

“We have a unique program for Secular Franciscans on their lay history and spirituality,” Fr. Couturier said. “Our academic conference will bring Dominican and Franciscan scholars together to explore the theologies that gave rise to Aquinas and Bonaventure. We encourage everyone to come to the institute and enjoy a Franciscan venue to study your Franciscan heritage.”

Registration, which opened Feb. 1, can be done through the Franciscan Institute page of the St. Bonaventure University website, where descriptions of the summer programs are available.

The class taught by historian Dominic, who served as Provincial Vicar from 2005 to 2014, is titled “Adapting to a New World: Franciscan Men in 19th and 20th Century America.” As part of the course, which runs from June 24 to 28, Dominic will share his wisdom from decades of teaching to examine the impact of the heritage of Franciscan men and women who arrived in the United States after 1840.

The course description says that the vastly different cultures and the pressing needs of poor immigrant families call on the course presenters to adapt their Franciscan life and ministries in new and creative ways.

Other programs being offered this summer at the Franciscan Institute include:

  • “Making Sense of a Forgotten Past: Lay Franciscans as Co-Creators” – taught by Darleen Pryds of the Franciscan School of Theology, who is a recently named member of the Franciscan Institute Research Advisory Council.
  • Secular Franciscan Conference (July 12 to 14) titled “Enduring Presence: Franciscan Laity, Their Relevance Today.”
  • “Insights into Clare: Her Relationships, Spirituality and Transformation,” from July 8 to 12.
  • “Quidam enim dicunt: “Mendicant Theologies Before Aquinas and Bonaventure,” an academic SBU Conference from July 15 to 18.

Franciscan School of Theology Courses
In Oceanside, Calif., the Franciscan School of Theology, affiliated with the University of San Diego, Calif., is offering four classes this summer. Information about the continuing education courses taking place on the grounds of Old Mission San Luis Ray in Oceanside can be found on the FST website and by contacting the registrar at 760-547-1800 ext. 200.

These courses include:

  • “Francis of Assisi: Life and Times,” taught by Fr. Joseph Chinnici, OFM.
  • “Writings of Francis of Assisi,” taught by Br. William Short, OFM.
  • “The Book of Genesis and the Spiritual Formation of God’s People,” taught by Br. Garrett Galvin, OFM.
  • “The Franciscan Spirituality of Presence with the Dying: Spiritual Practices that Cultivate Awareness for Caregivers and the Dying,” by Darleen Pryds.

The FST is planning to relocate to the University of San Diego campus this summer, according to a Feb. 5 announcement. FST says that the move will fortify an affiliation agreement between the graduate programs at USD and FST. Since 2013, students have taken courses at both schools to complete a more well-rounded graduate program, according to FST, which says the partnership has allowed students to improve their stewardship roles in the Catholic intellectual tradition.

“Our move to the USD campus builds upon our relationship with USD and provides FST an opportunity to explore new ways of expressing and sharing our faith and service,” said Fr. Michael Higgins, TOR, president of the Franciscan School of Theology. “We are excited about bringing together the spiritual, theological and social riches of the Franciscan tradition and USD’s excellence in contemporary sciences, non-profit management, public service, peace work and more. USD’s strong dedication to its Catholic heritage and its vibrant Catholic community create a supportive environment for graduate studies in theology in the Franciscan intellectual tradition.”

— Jocelyn Thomas is director of communications for Holy Name Province.

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