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Franciscan Mission Service provides training and support for lay missioners who serve for two to six years in various Franciscan placements around the world. Upon returning to the U.S., missioners continue to live out their calling in lifelong mission to transform North American people and society.

  • We are Catholic lay people, single men and women and married couples, called through our baptism to mission.
  • We seek to walk with the poor of other countries, sharing our gifts, living our faith, and learning from one another.
  • We are teachers, nurses, social workers, computer technicians, administrators, tradesman, and others who work together and strive to live a simple life in solidarity with the poor.


  • We are one of only a few Catholic lay mission organizations in North America that focuses solely on international mission. Our focus has allowed us to develop an in-depth 13-week formation and training program that prepares missioners for a cross-cultural mission experience, as well as a 3-week re-entry program. Our programs have been repeatedly praised for the preparation they provide missioners.
  • We are the only lay Franciscan mission program in North America. One of our central goals is to spread the Franciscan charism among lay people through our formation program and by the support of Franciscan religious in the mission field.
  • The third phase of our program asks our lay missioners to make a commitment to lifelong mission in North America. Because of their experiences, our missioners bring back a heightened understanding of "global solidarity" and our unity as one people on this earth. They are transformed by their time in mission, deepened in their faith; for many of them, the service experience brings out leadership skills that are then used in North America. They also bring "new eyes and ears" that help our U.S. church respond in creative ways to the dramatic social changes in our world today. Returned missioners commit themselves to working to transform our churches and society. In the spirit of Saints Francis and Clare, they work towards worldwide brother/sisterhood by building bridges between people of  the "first" and "two/thirds" world. We are continually open to ways to support our returned missioners in their work for social change in North America.

"FMS Missioners are the most prepared lay missioners I have ever worked with. They truly understand and engage in the 'ministry of presence', a hallmark of Franciscan mission".

Fr. Ignacio Harding, OFM
"Fr. Iggy" has served as a missioner in Bolivia for over 30 years

Franciscan Mission Service
P.O. Box 29034
Washington, DC 20017-0034

T: 202-832-1762 | F: 202-832-1778