I am aware of it and I think it is a very good group. Their governing documents are solid. As you are surely aware, it proposes a very penitential and prayerful life.
It’s actually established as a private association of the faithful by the Bishop of Fort Wayne-South Bend and is a confraternity whose members follow the ancient rule (1221) of the Franciscan Third Order Secular, as opposed to the contemporary Rule that was approved and confirmed by Blessed Pope Paul VI and is followed by the Secular Franciscan Order around the world.
Technically the Confraternity of Penitents exists sui juris (and as its own thing) as opposed to being integrated as part of the Secular Franciscan Order or otherwise part of a greater Franciscan institute…unless its status has somehow changed recently.
In other words, the authority over this association of the faithful is not a Franciscan superior but the bishop of the diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend, who established the association in his diocese some 10 years ago. The bishop, in turn, has appointed a priest of his diocese to assist the association in the bishop’s name. It does not therefore depend upon a Franciscan authority. It is not overseen by Franciscans. It is also not part of the worldwide Secular Franciscan Order.
I do not write any of this to discourage in any way. It is certainly an admirable association and it does follow the ancient Franciscan rule for the Brothers and Sisters of Penance, who were established by Saint Francis of Assisi. I am sure all of these distinctions are explained as you progress through their program of formation.
There are posts elsewhere on this forum about the Confraternity of Penitents and I have found the writings of a Franciscan religious, Brother JR, to be well written and quite precise about these various distinctions.