The Catholic Church teaches that all the faithful are called to holiness and have a right to follow their own spiritual way in communion with the Church. Within the Church there are many spiritual families with different charisms. Among these families, the Franciscan Family, which in its various branches recognizes St. Francis of Assisi as its father, inspiration, and model.
The Secular Franciscan Order is a public association in the Catholic Church. It is divided into fraternities at various levels: local, regional, national, and international. Each one has its own juridical personality within the Church.
The SFO is open to the faithful of every state of life, which includes men and women and secular clergy (deacons, priests, bishops). Both are inspired by the gospel options of St. Francis of Assisi, committing themselves to continue his mission with the other components of the Franciscan Family.
The SFO is governed by the universal law of the Church, and by it own: the Rule, the Constitutions, the Ritual, and the particular statutes.
The Rule establishes the nature, purpose, and spirit of the SFO.
The full Constitution is on the National SFO website. The link to our fraternity's website on the left of the main blog page has a link to the National site.