Besides being the greatest Order in the history of the Church (obviously…) the Franciscans have quite a unique feature to their history: we are the first Order to include missionary action into our Rule of life. Going to foreign nations, preaching the Word, and building up the Kingdom is what we’ve done from our very inception.
And it is what we are doing even today.
A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to visit one of our friaries down in Jamaica where the friars serve the poorest of the area. One friar in particular, Fr. Colin, is the pastor of two churches out in the country, requiring him to drive 20-40 minutes on dirt roads just to get to his church, and then multiple hours each day visiting his parishioners. Many live in houses made of unsealed wood and sheet metal, lacking many things we would consider basic necessities. As a missionary, he serves their needs, may it be physical or spiritual, and works to make life better for them.
It was a shame to only spend two days with him, as there was a lot more to show, but I think this video offers a great glimpse into what he does on a regular basis.