Marywood Franciscan Spirituality Center: Dominican and Franciscan Collaboration

Submitted by Mary Ellen Green, OP

According to traditions held sacred by both the members of the Franciscan Order and the Dominican Order, Francesco Bernadone and Domingo de Guzman met during their lifetimes. According to Professor Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira, these are the details of that meeting:

In the summer of 1215 St. Francis had a vision of two men who would labor for the conversion of the world. Francis recognized himself as one of these apostles. He did not recognize the other one, however. 

The following day, he was in one of the churches of Rome when suddenly an unknown person came up to him, embraced him, and said: “You are my companion, we will work together, supporting one another toward the same end and no one will prevail against us.” Francis recognized him as the other man in the vision. It was St. Dominic, who had also received a similar vision.

Together they worked to evangelize 13th Century Europe. Today their followers continue to preach the Good News of Christ.

Sister Mary Ellen Green (left) and Sister Elizabeth Amman (right)

Marywood Franciscan Spirituality Center in Arbor Vitae, WI is one of the many places in the world where the gospel is being preached in the context of Dominican/Franciscan collaboration. Though Marywood is sponsored by the Franciscan Sisters of Perpetual Adoration from LaCrosse, WI, two of the staff members are Dominicans. Elizabeth Amman, OP (Grand Rapids) is the Director and Mary Ellen Green, OP (Sinsinawa) is the Director of Development.

Located on the shore of Trout Lake in the scenic Wisconsin North Woods, Marywood is a peaceful place to nourish mind, body and spirit. The Center offers year-round day programs as well as longer retreats. Spiritual direction is also available. Our mission is to engage persons seeking greater meaning in life and a deeper relationship with God, others, self, and all creation by providing space for inspiration, reflection and solitude.

Please come and see us. Treat yourself to an experience of quiet and serenity. Listen to the loons at night. Observe the deer in their natural habitat. Watch the sun set over the water. Contemplate and pray in the beauty of nature. Let the silence enfold you with the Divine Mystery. Visit what may be the most beautiful place on earth. This is truly God’s country!