Welcome to the Secular Franciscans of Great Britain OFS GB


We are Secular Franciscans in Great Britain. Secular Franciscans are ordinary people, both men and women, who live in the world, work for a living, but follow the Franciscan spirit without taking vows.

You won’t see them wearing habits like monks & nuns, they wear ordinary clothes. They do not take vows, instead they profess after a period of formation which takes around 2 to 3 years.

They usually take on some voluntary charity work or parish work in their spare time and their motto is ‘Gospel to life & life to Gospel’

St Francis once said ‘preach the gospel but with as few words as possible!’

Our Great Britain Fraternity combines ENGLAND, SCOTLAND, WALES and GIBRALTAR, divided into nine regional fraternities.

As the Order has members in countries in all continents throughout the world it uses the acronym OFS, from the full international title – Ordo Franciscanus Saecularis, or Secular Franciscan Order.

Franciscan Spirituality and Prayer

These are some of the aspects of Franciscan Spirituality. The richness and depth of God’s love for all people and creation

Respect for the dignity and worth of every person

Living both an active and a contemplative life

Care for creation

Praising and Thanking God

Belonging to a community

A Spirit of detachment

A spirit of service

Let Go Let God

A Franciscan seeks to follow the Gospel way of life but with the specific guidance that can be found in the example of Francis of Assisi and through the lives of later Franciscans.  There is now an established Franciscan tradition that has developed over the centuries.  St Francis lived from 1181-1226.  He was always inspired by the immense love of God and reflected deeply on the poverty and humility of Jesus, manifested in the mysteries of His life.

Even eight hundred years after his death, in our day, the spirituality of Francis has a freshness and a modernity that inspires us with its simplicity and humility, with its call to follow Christ with passion.  To follow Christ in “the radical, light-filled and joyful style” of Francis (as Felice Cangelosi describes it), to develop a personal experience of a relationship with Jesus Christ, as the way to true life.

Francis has left some writings although he was not a learned theologian.  He knew Scripture well and was engaged in contemporary issues that mattered to Christians. His writings still offer practical guidance that is relevant today.

The Admonitions

Among these we find “The Admonitions”, written for the brothers who had joined his movement, designed to teach the brothers how they should treat others, based on their lived experience.  These short teachings follow the style of the beatitudes so begin “Blessed is”  (sometimes translated as ”Happy is”).

Blessed is the servant who loves his brother as much when he is sick and cannot repay him as when he is well and can repay him (Admonition XXIV)

Blessed is the servant who loves and respects his brother as much when he is far away from him as when he is with him. And would not say anything behind his back that he would not say with charity in his presence.  (Admonition XXV)

From: Francis of Assisi: Early Documents. Volume 1 The Saint; ed Armstrong, Hellmann and Short.

You can click the link below to find out more about the Franciscans

Find out more about the Franciscans in UK

If you think you might be interested in getting to know The Franciscans please see the contact details below.

Contact us at: info@ofsgb.org or at facebook or twitter. Our OFSGB National Office is at: Poor Clare Monastery, 102 Galley Lane, Arkley, Barnet, Herts EN5 4AN. The National Minister may be contacted at natmin@ofsgb.org.

Useful Links

Franciscans in Great Britain/OFSGB/ Secular Franciscans Order of Great Britain/ for ordinary lay people.


The International Fraternity of the Ordo  Franciscanus Saecularis (the Secular Franciscan Order)


The Order of Friars Minor (OFM) in Great Britain.


The Capuchin Franciscans (OFM Cap) of Great Britain


The Order of Friars Minor Conventual (OFM Conv) of Great Britain & Ireland (The Greyfriars).


The Poor Clares do not have a website that includes all their convents in the UK. This is the website of the Poor Clares at Arkley, Barnet, in North London.

The Poor Clares at Arkley

And this is the website of the Poor Clares at Arundel.


San Francesco – Magazine of the Basilica of San Francesco of Assisi


The Vatican (The Holy See)


The Catholic Church in England and Wales


The Catholic Church in Scotland


Centre for Catholic Studies, Durham University

St Mary’s University, Twickenham – which includes “the world-renowned Franciscan Studies Collection from the Franciscan Study Centre in Canterbury. The collection is believed to be the largest collection related to Franciscanism in Northern Europe, combined with a Holy Land collection, and including over 5,000 volumes, plus 50 runs of periodicals and smaller magazines.