Franciscan Sisters of St. Joseph

We, the Franciscan Sisters of St. Joseph,

witness the Gospel in joy and peace, committed to prayer, service, and

care for all creation.
FSSJ Mission Statement

Art work by Sister Lynne Anne Schimminger, FSSJ

Our Mission & Vision

Helping to connect people to faith

We, the Franciscan Sisters of St. Joseph,
witness the Gospel in joy and peace,
committed to prayer, service, and care for all creation.

FSSJ Treasured Memories
Art work by Sr. Lynne Anne Schimminger, FSSJ
“What you hold, may you always hold…”
St. Clare of Assisi
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A Time of Change and Growth

“The need for continual conversion calls us to examine our lives daily in order to evaluate whether we (FSSJ) bring the love of Christ to others.”  FSSJ Constitution, Art. 34

FSSJ will always examine our life together and “strive to live in this world as pilgrims and strangers”.  One simple example of this is the various symbols we wore in the last 125 years of our existence.  It was through reflection, prayer and deep faith that we let go of some symbols and let other symbols replace them.  The quote above reminds us that it is in letting go that we find deeper meaning in all that we do.

Picture created by Sr. Geraldine Rutkowski

The crucifixes that the Sisters wore before Vatican II are pictured.  The crucifix on the left is the crucifix the Sisters received when they professed their final vows.  The crucifix on the right the Sisters received when they celebrated their 25 years of faithful profession of their vows. 

Grotto of Blessed Mother at St. Francis Park

After Vatican II, there was a time the Roman Catholic Church asked all women religious to experiment with symbols, habits, and prayer styles in order to live more authentically their charism (the gift each congregation of women religious gives to the Church).  Some of the symbols, pictured on the left, were worn to distinguish us as Franciscan Sisters of St. Joseph.  The symbol on the left includes our initials, FSSJ, on a wooden cross.  This was designed by Sr. Marvina Kupiszewski.  The middle symbol is the FSSJ Coat of Arms designed by Sr. Geraldine Rutkowski.   The crucifix on the left is also one that we could wear. 

As the FSSJ pondered and prayed over our Franciscan roots, charism, and mission, many in the community have preferred to wear the San Damiano Cross.  This cross means a great deal to all Franciscans because it was this kind of cross that Francis prayed in front of to ask God for direction in his life.  Eventually, Francis heard Jesus, from the cross say, “Repair my house.”  At first, Francis thought he was supposed to repair churches – buildings – in his area.  As he grew in the ways of God, Francis realized that Jesus was telling him to repair the people of God – the Church.  Francis did this by helping and serving lepers, the most marginalized people of his time, and seeing all of creation as brother and sister.  FSSJ strive to do the same.

What We Do

Ways to Get Involved.

Mission & Ministry


Learn About Franciscan Spirituality




Prayer ~ Reflection

Remembrance Garden

A place that offers opportunities for prayer

and quiet reflection.

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©2020 Franciscan Sisters of Saint Joseph
5229 South Park Avenue, Hamburg, NY 14075
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