Please join us as any of the following;
Member of the Tertiary Sisters of St. Francis,
Conditions for Admission
The candidate should have freely made the choice to join the Congregation and should be;
Baptized, confirmed and a practising Catholic
Holder of, at least Advanced Level Certificate or Professional Certificate, and, at least, 18 years old.
Physically, psychologically and spiritually fit and have the disposition to live with others.
Free from any other commitments.
Candidates present a handwritten application (any time) to the Vocation Promotion Office in Shisong with the addresses and phone numbers of her reference person.
A recommendation letter from the Parish Priest, Spiritual Director(if any) is also required.
2. A lay Companion,
Companion relationship is a journey of mutual moral and spiritual support between the Tertiary Sisters of St. Francis and other Christians who desire to enrich their lives by sharing in the spirituality and charism of the Franciscan Sisters. Thirst for God through the Franciscan way brings us together
To share and to receive
To call forth one another to conversion
To be determined to live out the fruits of our search.
HISTORY OF COMPANION RELATIONSHIP
The history goes back to our Common Venture experience with the Franciscan Sisters of the Eucharist (FSE), Franciscan Sisters of Perpetual Adoration (FSPA) and Sisters of St. Francis of Assisi (OSF). When Sr. Suzanne Rubenbauer, FSPA and Sr. Rebecca Burke, OSF, visited Cameroon in January 2000, they shared with us the experience they had of sharing the Franciscan values with lay people whom they call Affiliates, Associates, and Apprentices. When we listened to their sharing we discussed that there are signs around us that this could be carried out in our own context. We realized that there are people who are closer to us who have expressed a need to belong and deepen their Christian life. They admire the Franciscan Spirituality deeply, yet do not have access to it and do not feel called to the Secular Franciscan Order. Some express this wish by sharing with us their experience of struggling with prayer, life issues, etc, which we read as a quest for spirituality.
Those of us present at that meeting saw this possibility of sharing our Franciscan values with the people of Cameroon through this experience. We immediately worked on the brochure and shared with those interested and by June 4, the first meeting was held in Shisong Convent.
The group in Shisong was immediately formed; then in Njinikom, Bafut, Soppo, etc. Sr. Alexine Nii and Sr. Roberta Feh were assigned to accompany them through monthly encounters, which they did every first Sunday of the month. Even though the number of Companions initially enrolled in Shisong started to reduce since 2003, committed sisters and companions find the experience enriching, and are convinced it is the call of the Holy Spirit.
In 2003, Sr. Evelyn Nahjela spearheaded the formation of a branch of young companions in Shisong with a second group of its kind in Wum, facilitated by Sr. Maria Kinyuy.
The CTSSF identify themselves by a lifestyle according to the Gospel orientation marked by the charism and spirituality of the Tertiary Sisters of St. Francis.
FORMATION OF THE COMPANIONS
Once a person indicates interest in the relationship, the responsible Tertiary Sister in the community furnishes him/her with adequate information and accompanies the candidates in their search. After at least six months of reflection, the candidates should declare whether to continue or withdraw from the process.
During the first two-to-three years of “initial formation,” the candidate meets with the assigned sister on a bi-weekly basis to study the following topics not neglecting monthly sessions:
Life of St. Francis, St. Clare, Maria Hueber
Story of the Congregation of the Tertiary Sisters of St. Francis
Constitutions of the Tertiary Sisters
Rule of the Third Order Regular
Prayer, Reconciliation, Peacemaking, Conversion and other Franciscan themes
Church Document on mission of the laity
When this program is covered, the candidate may make a commitment. The rest of the years shall be an ongoing process of enrichment of life and ministry through
Monthly encounters/sharing with sisters and other companions
Spiritual direction / Counselling
Prayer together in convents or at homes
Participation at significant events in community and companions’ families
Common or private annual retreats and recollections
After “initial formation” of at least two years, the candidate and the affiliate community shall jointly discern the possibility of a formal commitment. It shall be made forever or for a given number of years in the presence of a praying community of sisters and other Companions and Provincial Superior or her delegate. Companions will commit themselves to:
Collaborate with the Tertiary Sisters and other Companions for moral and spiritual growth by living their charism, mission, spirituality and values in their secular state.
A Companion could also exist without making a commitment.
Whether within the years of temporary or final commitment, a companion may discontinue the relationship only through joint discernment between him/her and the responsible Tertiary Sister. A companion shall not be dismissed.
A person at a searching stage may discontinue at any time with a verbal or written notification to the Coordinator of the Companion.
While encouraging mutual trust and confidentiality, the parties shall observe the following;
A TSSF shall not act as Companion’s family leader/head
Companions working in the TSSF institutions would not demand prerogatives at job side
No party shall lay claim of another’s property
Companions shall not be delegated or participate in TSSF local or Provincial Chapters
Companions shall not live in or visit enclosures
No financial obligations shall be imposed on any of the parties. Financial contributions, however, shall be event-focused, not as a routine.
3. A donor,
Donations can be made to assist in the Apostolates of the Tertiary Sisters of St. Francis.
4. A collaborator,
It is possible to be a collaborator and bring in suggestions in the various ministries of the Tertiary Sisters.
5. A staff member.
If you realize that you have talents and experience that could be useful in any of the ministries of the TSSFs, do not feel reluctant indicating or applying to serve in any of the institutions.
We have been entrusted with a charism to live and ministry in the Church and society and your collaboration will always be welcomed with deep appreciation
We consecrate ourselves to God through the vows of Poverty, Obedience and Chastity. We live
according to the Rule of the Third Order Regular of St. Francis of Assisi and in the spirit of Maria Hueber, our mother Beginner, who responded to God's call, dedicated to the education of the under-privileged girls.
Our Core Values Includes: Conversion, Contemplation, simple life style, joy, hospitality, compassion, availa
bility and accountability.
Some of the Franciscan Symbols commonly used:
A white cord: A sign of membership in the Franciscan Family. The three nodes symbolize Chastity, temperance, and obedience.
The Franciscan crown (Rosary) or the seven Joys of Our Lady: as revealed to a FrSanDiamianoBIGanciscan Novice in 1422 by Our Lady.
The San Damiano Cross: Spoke to St. Francis in a little Church in Assisi, "Francis, go rebuild my Church".