Upcoming Retreats

The Franciscan heart of Thomas Merton: An exploration of Franciscan Spirituality and Theology through the life and writings of Merton

January 11-15, 2016

Daniel Hornan, OFMMany people know that Thomas Merton once considered joining the Franciscan friars and, with that not working out, believe he eventually left his Franciscan vocation behind to become a Trappist Monk. What many people do not know is that Merton was deeply shaped and influenced by the Franciscan spiritual and theological tradition both before and after his entrance into the Trappists. He writes in his journals and throughout his correspondence of his continuing love of the Franciscan tradition, admiration of Franciscan saints and theologians, and never abandons his exploration of key Franciscan themes. In fact, some of his most significant spiritual contributions have deep Franciscan roots, including his notion of the “True Self,” his understanding of peacemaking and social justice, his Christology, and his view of creation. This retreat explores the untold story of how the most popular saint in Christian history and the tradition that bears his name inspired the most popular spiritual writer of the twentieth century, as well as how these insights can inspire Christians today.

Bio: Daniel P. Horan, OFM, is a Franciscan friar of Holy Name Province (The New York province), a columnist for America magazine, and the author of several books including, most recently, The Last Words of Jesus: A Meditation on Love and Suffering (2013); Francis of Assisi and the Future of Faith: Exploring Franciscan Spirituality and Theology in the Modern World (2012); and Dating God: Live and Love in the Way of St. Francis (2012). His newest book is titled: The Franciscan Heart of Thomas Merton: A New Look at the Spiritual Influence on his Life, Thought, and Writing (Ave Maria Press. He is the author of dozens of scholarly and popular articles in journals including Theological Studies, New Blackfriars, The Heythrop Journal, Worship, Cistercian Studies Quarterly, among others, and a frequent lecturer and retreat director around the United States and Europe. He has previously taught in the Department of Religious Studies at Siena College and in the Department of Theology at St. Bonaventure University. Fr. Dan serves on the Board of Directors of the International Thomas Merton Society.

For more information or to register for these retreats call the Franciscan Life Center of the Franciscan Sisters of Little Falls: 320-632-0668 or

Following Jesus: Reading the gospels through the Franciscan lens

Sr. Mary Beth InghamAugust 5-11, 2016

This retreat focuses on the important way that the Franciscan approach frames how we read the Gospel message as Good News. With the help of John Duns Scotus, we will consider the “breadth and length, the height and depth” of God’s love for us and for our world.

Sr. Mary Beth Ingham, CSJ is Professor of Philosophical Theology at the Franciscan School of Theology, Berkeley. She is a well known presenter on the Franciscan vision of Blessed John Duns Scotus and is the author of The Harmony of Goodness: Mutuality and Moral Living According to John Duns Scotus (2012), Rejoicing in the Works of the Lord: Beauty in the Franciscan Tradition, and Scotus for Dunces: an Introduction to the Subtle Doctor.

For more information or to register for these retreats call the Franciscan Life Center of the Franciscan Sisters of Little Falls: 320-632-0668 or

Follow Us:   Twitter-Logo1


Find Us:

116 8th Avenue SE
Little Falls, Minnesota



(320) 632-2981

Contact Form

The Franciscan Sisters of Little Falls, Minnesota, is a community of Catholic women religious who follow the Gospel of Jesus Christ, walking in the footsteps of Saints Francis and Clare of Assisi. We believe that the living of a poor, simple and prayerful community life is a ministry of presence and witness. Our doors are open to the public to celebrate Mass in Sacred Heart Chapel and to benefit from the St. Francis Music Center and St. Francis Health & Recreation Center. We welcome those who wish to join us as sisters, associates, volunteers, transfer sisters, friends and donors.


Throughout this web site, we provide links to other web sites, solely for the user's convenience. By providing these links, we assume no responsibility for, or do we necessarily endorse these web sites, their content, or their sponsoring organizations.