THE Sylvania Franciscan Sisters of St. Francis OF Sylvania, Ohio Development Report WINTER 2011 Franciscan Village Created to Be a Place of Peace, Justice and Love of Neighbor Mission Statement Called like Francis of Assisi to live the Gospel in joyful servanthood among all people, the Sisters of St. Francis of Sylvania, Ohio, as messengers of peace, commit themselves to works that reverence human dignity, embrace the poor and marginalized, and respect the gift of all creation. October 4, 2010, the feast day of St. Francis of Assisi, marked the official launch of the Sylvania Franciscan Village. Created to serve people and make a difference in their lives, the Village is the collaboration of the Sisters of St. Francis of Sylvania and their two sponsored ministries, Lourdes College (education) and Franciscan Services Corporation (health and human services), to harness their collective energies for the greater good of all those who share the Franciscan mission. The day began with the St. Francis de Sales High School marching band leading a parade of villagers from the Franciscan Center to the corner of Convent Boulevard and Main Street where a Village sign was unveiled. Leaders from the three entities spoke to those in attendance about the vision, purpose and future of the Sylvania Franciscan Village. “The image of an emerging Sylvania Franciscan Village is cause for great hope among God’s people,” said Sister Diana Lynn Eckel, Congregational Minister for the Sisters of St. Francis. “As a religious congregation with roots in Sylvania going back to 1916, we were always advised to ‘read the signs of the times’ and let them direct our ministries. I believe we are called today to create a sign for the current times. “Our world is craving something that speaks of God’s love, of God’s peace, of contemplation and welcoming. We, the Sisters of St. Francis, the Lourdes College community and Franciscan Services Corporation boldly take on the challenge to be this sign–people who embrace and live the Franciscan spirit and values of our founder St. Francis of Assisi and foundress Mother Adelaide through a commitment of collaboration and growth.” Village day included Mass in Our Lady Queen of Peace Chapel, to give thanks to God and honor the life of St. Francis of Assisi, and ended with a picnic-style dinner in the Franciscan Center–because there is no better way to strengthen bonds than with food and good conversation. Current projects on the drawing board to advance the Village concept include collaboration between Lourdes College and the Sylvania Franciscan Academy to partner on things that will make both entities stronger and more viable; development of an elder care program by Franciscan Services Corporation and the Sisters as a way to strengthen intergenerational connections; and expansion of the newly launched Lourdes College student housing. An electronic newsletter has been created to inform villagers and those interested in knowing more about the activities of the Sylvania Franciscan Village. If you would like to be put on the e-News list, contact Dale Thomas, by e-mail at, firstname.lastname@example.org or, by phone at, 419-824-3627.