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Overseas Lay Missioner

Please Note:
As an independent 501(c)(3) Franciscan Mission Service’s programs rely on donations and the support of returned missioners, alumni, and the extended Franciscan Mission Service support community. Our support-raising philosophy, which includes extending an invitation for prayer and emotional support, also requires that all of missioners engage in fundraising. FMS provides extensive tools and training to help missioners with this support-raising ministry. Missioners are given a minimum fund-raising goal as well as tools to help them meet that goal over the course of their time with FMS.
Many of our missioners have found support-raising to be a fruitful part of their mission experience, as the ministry allows friends and family to accompany them on their journey overseas. We recognize the value in the saying “Some give by going, others go by giving.”
Missioner candidates are directly responsible for transportation costs to and from Discernment Days and formation in Washington, DC, as well as a few other smaller expenses.

About Franciscan Mission Service:
Franciscan Mission Service (FMS) is a nonprofit organization that provides Catholic laity the opportunity to serve in solidarity with economically marginalized communities around the world. FMS trains, sends, and supports volunteers to serve others in a way that is respectful of cultural, religious, and personal differences. Since 1990, FMS has supported lay missioners in 20 different countries and currently supports missioners in Bolivia, Guatemala and Jamaica.

About the Overseas Lay Mission Program:
The Overseas Lay Mission Program offers Catholic adults opportunities to serve alongside people living on the margins while growing in Franciscan values of peace, justice, reconciliation, and care for creation. In the spirit of Saints Francis and Clare, our Catholic lay missioners serve for 2 or more years in a variety of ministries in solidarity with economically poor and oppressed communities in Latin America and the Caribbean. Our possible mission sites this year include Bolivia, Guatemala, and Jamaica. This transformative experience is enriched by an intentional Christian community, in which missioners focus on simple living, prayer, reflection, and living the Gospel mission of “service and action for a more just and humane world.”

Key Program Benefits:
·      Immersion in a new culture and host community, where you will serve and learn alongside community members and local Franciscans
·      Training in a 3-month Formation program, funding for two retreats or self-care while on mission, and a 3-week Re-Entry Retreat upon return to the U.S.
·      Spiritual direction and ample opportunities to deepen one’s faith
·      A fully-furnished bedroom, monthly stipend, and health insurance
·      Partnering with ministry sites affiliated with Franciscan orders that in fields such as education, prison ministry, youth outreach, community health, elderly care, special needs children, pastoral ministry, sustainable agriculture, etc.
·      An interest in serving in solidarity with the economically poor
·      Humility and openness to learning from the host culture and community
·      A Franciscan disposition towards relationship-building that views each person as an individual who is created and loved by God   
Required Qualifications: 
·      A lay Catholic open to the Franciscan tradition who can commit to at least two years of service.
·      Single, married, or divorced — generally between the ages of 22 and 62 (without dependents).
·      Prior cross-cultural experience and/or a second language are valuable, though not required.
To learn more, read volunteers’ blogs or apply, visit: