As the Solemnity of Easter approaches, the Shrine of St. Francis offers you an opportunity to assist in beautifying the Church — as a sign of our praise of the Risen Lord.

YOUR DONATIONS will assist the Shrine in adorning both the St. Francis church and the Porziuncola chapel with beautiful flowers. Please consider making an Offering for the intention of: a deceased or sick loved one or for prayers for yourself or others.

On a blank envelope, please identify your donation for "EASTER FLOWERS". Along with your gift by cash or check *(payable to National Shrine of St. Francis of Assisi), please provide: 1) the name of the person who is the intention of the offering, 2) whether deceased, sick, etc., and 3) your name and number.

OFFERING ENVELOPES may be placed in the Collection basket at Mass or deposited in the center aisle Donation box in the rear of the church. You may also mail your donation.

Note: Credit Card donations may be submitted on-line HERE In gratitude, the Shrine will post the names that are dedicated in our Bulletin and in the back of the Church in the weeks following Easter Sunday.


The National Shrine welcomed the presence of Fr. Paul Madassery, OFM Cap. on Thursday, March 7. Fr. "Pauli" comes from the Capuchin Province of St. Thomas, Aluva, Kerala, India and was in the Bay Area to see firsthand the local ministries of the Western Province Capuchins.

Lent 2019

Now, at this "acceptable time," Lent begins. We are called again to stop the ordinary routine, evaluate the areas where we have strayed from the ideals of Christian life, and make a deliberate turning back to God. In these days we only have to turn on the news to see vivid evidence of just how far our culture is from Christian ideals: the passing of horrific laws that permit the killing of full-term infants; family separation resulting from oppressive social and economic forces, affecting especially vulnerable immigrant families; an epidemic of homelessness; revelations of abuse of power even within the hierarchy of the Church; the list goes on and on. Be merciful, O Lord, for we have sinned.

And our Lord is merciful. Things do change when we are willing to trust God, which means to obey Him and let God do things God's way. Our turning, or conversion, to God is a great act of trust, the ultimate sign of our repentance and belief, of our change of attitude and change of life, of our trust that God does care for us and guides our lives, and of our conviction that God wants us to share the eternal life of His risen Son and the fullness of His kingdom. It is trust that God will, in His own way and own time, bring order out of the chaos of our lives and of our world. And so it means never giving up on God, who never gives up on us.

I encourage you not to let these 40 days slip by. Be intentional in increasing your prayer, fasting, and almsgiving. Attend parish Lenten events. Receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation. I pray for fruitfulness of your efforts, resulting in increased joy when we arrive at Easter. May you have a blessed Lent.

4 Ways to Gain a Plenary Indulgence Daily During Lent

Joseph Pronechen, National Catholic Register (excerpted)

Lent is a time for fasting from any number of things — favorite desserts, hypnotic television, and pervasive texting. On the other hand, this is naturally not time to fast from the spiritual goods.

In fact, we can increase the spiritual goods in Lenten fashion and at the same time gain several plenary indulgences — an indulgence which removes all the temporal punishment due to sin — not just to apply to ourselves but to especially to those in purgatory. That is a spiritual work of mercy that's a great partner with any fasting. In fact, gaining the indulgence might require some sacrifice, especially of time. That would bring in some fasting from non-essentials like social media.

There are three necessary conditions for receiving a plenary indulgence for doing any of the prescribed works just listed. Each one in this trinity of conditions also has the bonus of adding to our Lenten journey. They are:

Welcome to the National Shrine of Saint Francis of Assisi and the namesake of our city, San Francisco. The National Shrine is the property of the Archdiocese of San Francisco, and it consists of our historic Church built in 1849 and our beautiful Chapel (La Porziuncola Nuova, or Little Portion) built in 2008.

The National Shrine is not only located in the heart of San Francisco where Italian North Beach and Chinatown meet, it is "The Heart of San Francisco" in a singular way where Heaven and Earth meet like no other place in our city.

One of the reasons this Shrine is unique is its very urban location in the second most densely populated city in the country. But in the midst of an often rowdy, noisy, bawdy, and chaotic neighborhood (a bronze marker in the sidewalk reminds us that this was once "The Barbary Coast"), the Shrine's Church and the Porziuncola offer an oasis of peace, quiet, serenity, and refreshment to the thirsty spirit.

Saint Francis was very aware that all of God's creation is holy and that it reflects his beauty, truth, and goodness. But Francis appreciated churches, especially, because he knew that in these sacred spaces people could find and recognize the presence of God's spirit more easily than "in the world." That is why the Little Poor Man of Assisi dedicated a good portion of his life to rebuilding old abandoned churches, like San Damiano (where he had heard the voice of Jesus Christ) and Saint Mary of the Angels Porziuncola (or Little Portion).

We hope during your online visit to The National Shrine of Saint Francis of Assisi you will experience something of the reverence, tranquility, and blessings people find when they enter our actual doors. Thus, we invite you to take the virtual tours, light a candle, ask for our prayers, and to return to this site as often as you like, while allowing "The Heart of San Francisco" to become a place where your own heart can find a haven of rest. Yes, leave your heart in San Francisco!

We also invite you to take the opportunity to participate in the mission of The National Shrine of Saint Francis of Assisi by sharing with us your financial support, either by making a donation or by shopping at our online store. But even if you're unable to give anything at this time, please know that you are always welcome to visit us and to support our work with your prayers. We sincerely appreciate and thank you for your generosity of spirit.

St. Francis of Assisi Mission

The National Shrine of Saint Francis of Assisi, as with The Archdiocese of San Francisco, has a mission that is rooted in the Gospels and the social teachings of the Roman Catholic Church. Central to that teaching is the inherent dignity and sacredness of each human being.

We educate and advocate on this dignity in relation to the unborn child, the prisoner on death row, the homeless and hungry person on our streets, the elderly, the ill and disabled faced with the threat of assisted suicide, the stranger in our midst, and the poor and marginalized in our society and throughout the world. We are neither right nor left, Republican nor Democrat, but we formulate our agenda by the standard of human dignity that is reflected in our faith tradition.

  1. It is the purpose of the National Shrine of Saint Francis of Assisi to provide more abundant means of salvation, through the rich liturgical and devotional life of the Roman Catholic Church for the Christian faithful, including those who come as pilgrims from around the world to the City of San Francisco and the greater San Francisco Bay Area, who seek to encounter the living God through religious worship and special devotion to St. Francis of Assisi and the Franciscan saints.
  2. It is the further purpose of the National Shrine to welcome, share and extend this same spiritual experience and devotion to St. Francis of Assisi and the Franciscan saints to pilgrims and visitors of all faiths, religions, denominations, and nationalities.
  3. The Capuchin Franciscan Friars (OFM Cap.) and Staff of the National Shrine, therefore, provide a pastoral (i.e., welcoming and prayerful) environment with the hope that in the spirit of St. Francis of Assisi, spiritual nourishment healing and reconciliation will be found by all who visit the Shrine.