Priests entering Secular Franciscan Order?


Just wondering.

 Are priests already professed into the SFO by virtue of ordination, or do they also require conversion and formation to become Secular Franciscans? If the latter, do the formation sequences still apply, ie; Novitiate,etc, or do they get to skip some steps,time frames or acceptance stages? 

 In Const. Article 35,2, is the pursual of  "ascetical and pastoral incentives" manditory for him to perfect in order to be ordained? (I'm thinking like a prerequisite). It's probably a general interest thing at his discretion.

Thanks for the help.


It is difficult to tell by your question as it is phased…however I will take a (hopefully educated guess)

  1. Priests in the Franciscan order (either first or third order) do not become "Secular or ‘SFO’ …"as they are either first or third order following the rule of St. Francis and constitutions drawn up for their particular branch or community. (Simplified for length of reply)

  2. The Secular Franciscans were basically developed for lay people who were not called to religious life as a priest, brother or Nun (or now also sister) within the Franciscan family.

That being said there have been many Diocesan priests (considered Secular priests) who have become "Third Order… Secular… Priests)

For example… St. John Vianney, St. John XXIII, St. Pope Pius X to name only a few.

I hope I have helped in some small way… again the answer is edited as to length


Sr. Debbie OSC


DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit