The Franciscan educational ministry has more than 70 years of experience in Costa Rica, training children and young people at Saint Francis College. This tireless work has shown the importance of balancing the academic, emotional, and spiritual areas to generate a transforming and multiplying effect in the families and communities in which the students of the Institution have become agents of positive change.
Several generations of young Costa Ricans have developed in an atmosphere of harmony inspired by Franciscan values, becoming integral people who seek the common good, as well as a more just and supportive society. This is not just for the few; the backbone of pastoral care is the value of solidarity. Education is not a privilege, and therefore Saint Francis College has a scholarship program that gives young people the opportunity to develop their talents, skills, and leadership.
Latin America is a complex region with significant social gaps, but with a great treasure, its people. Millions of hidden talents must be transformed into positive instruments of change, not only in their lives but also in their families, communities, countries, and regions.
The 21st century poses challenges that human beings have not wanted to face before, such as the environmental impact of their actions. It is time to rethink our way of life and recognize our responsibility as human beings. Here is where the importance of the message of Saint Francis of Assisi increases and how we must instill these values in the children of the world to generate positive impacts, both in people and in nature; Costa Rica has the conditions to promote this vision and leadership. We must train these new agents of change.
The pandemic demonstrates human vulnerability and the imperative need to change one’s lifestyle to be genuinely respectful of the environment. This challenge forces the new generations to propose creative solutions to complex problems, and the educational ministry is committed to strengthening their skills to transform the future.
Ecosystems are self-replicating, self-propagating, and self-maintaining. By ministering to our children they can learn the importance of caring for our common home and pass that along to others throughout their lives.
Saint Francis College was created 70 years ago in the capital of the country: San José. Now is the time to increase our outreach to more families. Fortunately, the Order has a property in the second most populous city in the country: Alajuela. Here is where Saint Francis College has established its new campus.
Its strategic location allows it to serve families in downtown Alajuela, as well as nearby communities. There is a need for greater academic offerings in this area, which has experienced significant industrial, commercial, urban, and residential growth in recent years.
With faith, commitment, and dedication, this new undertaking has started to enable a space of peace and spirituality in Alajuela. Children will grow up within the Franciscan philosophy, and the ties of the Order of Conventual Friars Minor community will be strengthened.