Healing Body and Soul
We have a history of health and healing ministry development. We've staffed health care organizations throughout the United States and beyond. Today, our founded health care ministries carry on their Franciscan legacies in the spirit of St. Francis and St. Clare and continue the work we began. We continue to respond to the needs in front of us, to those from all walks of life, to people throughout the whole world and our healing ministries continue through collaborations.
Franciscan Spirituality Centers
Our sponsored spirituality centers, Prairiewoods Franciscan Spirituality Center, Marywood Franciscan Spirituality Center and Franciscan Spirituality Center, have been our response to people's desire to grow in relationship to God, creation, others and self. They are an expression of FSPA's call to balance contemplation, ministry and creative ways of living community.
The Homeless Outreach Team from People Incorporated, an organization dedicated to supporting mental health and wellness in the Twin Cities Metro Area of Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minnesota, understands that “There’s not yet parity for mental health services, like there is for physical health services,” explains Wendy Darst, grants officer for People Incorporated. “People Incorporated is definitely trying to address that and make sure that folks get the treatment they need. And as far as the FSPA funding specifically, it is definitely going to the people with the greatest need and challenges: individuals who are generally living outdoors due to their severe mental health issues.”
Sister Jacinta Jackson's ministry of chemical and mental abuse counseling in Minneapolis, Minnesota, is buoyed by both her family living in several countries around the world and her FSPA family. She currently serves as a licensed alcohol and drug counselor. Sister Jacinta enjoys helping her clients discover their own pathways to living a healthy and wholistic life.
Mental health issues, particularly in adolescents, can be seen throughout the La Crosse community, affecting physical, psychological and social well-being. Through specially designed mentoring programs, the Boys and Girls Club of La Crosse has found success in addressing the prevalence of mental health in the youth that they serve. The effects of this mental health program have shown great promise however, now more than ever, these youth services have seen an increase in demand. Due to the affordable fees offered by the Boys and Girls Club, more and more people rely on them for help each year and the budget for this program continues to grow as well. Through support from an FSPA ministry grant (and a portion of our #GivingTuesday 2018 gifts), the Boys and Girls Club of Greater La Crosse is able to provide mental health intervention for at-risk youth.
St. Clare Health Mission
In 1992 representatives of health care and social services organizations throughout the La Crosse Coulee Region began a collaborative effort to address healthcare access for the poor. After months of planning, a unique and innovative program began to emerge—a program of providing free care to those who would otherwise receive none. This program is St. Clare Health Mission, named for Clare of Assisi, a contemporary of St. Francis who renounced all of her possessions—even giving away her shoes—as she devoted her life to the care of the poor. The term “health mission” describes not only the program, but also the motivation that guides it.
Though staffed entirely by volunteers—including physicians, nurses, social workers, laboratory personnel, pharmacists, and support personnel from Mayo-Franciscan Healthcare, Gundersen Health System, FSPA, and the community—costs of running the mission are high. Donations keep the center running, and we welcome contributions. Gifts may be directed to the mission at 916 Ferry Street, La Crosse, WI 54601-8808. For more information on gift-giving opportunities, please call 608-784-6449 or 608-791-4712.