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A Franciscan Minorite in Assisi
Burial place in the main cemetery in Würzburg

The Minorites or Franciscan Minorites (Latin Ordo fratrum minorum conventualium ), abbreviation OFMConv or OMinConv , are a religious community in the Roman Catholic Church . They are also called (Franciscan) conventuals or, popularly called black Franciscans , according to the color of their habit . In France, they are, after as Zingulum worn cord, also Cordeliers called, in English-speaking, after the usual there pale gray habit, "Greyfriars".

The Franciscan orders are divided into male, female and third orders . In 1517 the order, originally founded by St. Francis of Assisi , divided into two separate communities, the Minorites and the Franciscan Observants . Occasionally the members of the general Franciscan order before the division in 1517 are called Minorites (Ordo fratrum minorum) or "Friars Minor"

Today the Franciscan Minorites have around 4,200 members worldwide (4,225 as of December 31, 2015). So they are a smaller community than the Franciscans (OFM) or their somewhat younger branch, the Capuchins .


The general government of the Franciscan Minorites is in Rome , the spiritual center in the so-called main and mother monastery of all Franciscans, the Sacro Convento in Assisi . The Argentine Carlos Trovarelli has been the Minister General since May 2019 . In Germany, too, the order is represented by an independent order province, the province of St. Elisabeth with a provincialate in Würzburg . Since October 2019, Br. Andreas Murk has been Provincial Minister for the German Province; he replaced Bernhardin M. Seither, who had held the office since 2011. He is supported by four brothers as the definitory , who together with him form the provincial government.

The Würzburg Franciscan Monastery, the oldest Franciscan convent in Germany, which was founded during the lifetime of St. Francis , has been a Franciscan Minorite monastery since the 16th century. The branches of the order in Germany also include the Maria Eck monastery in Siegsdorf im Chiemgau , the Schwarzenberg monastery and educational center in Scheinfeld and the Schönau monastery near Gemünden in Franconia. In Cologne , the Order Province looks after the Church of St. Kolumba and the Minorite Church . There are also around 20 branches that are looked after by brothers from the three Polish provinces. Romanian brothers are also active in Chiemgau.

The German province currently has around 40 brothers. The activities and tasks of the friars range from pilgrimage and parish pastoral care to spiritual accompaniment to involvement in the mission of the order and the homeless work in the Würzburg street ambulance . The German province has been providing the chaplain on the Käppele in Würzburg since 2015 .

Known minorites

The poet Angelus Silesius (1624–1677) entered the order of the Franciscan Minorites after his conversion . One of the best-known Franciscan Minorites was the missionary Maximilian Kolbe (1894–1941), who died on behalf of a father in the Auschwitz concentration camp .

See also

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Annuario Pontificio , 2017 edition, p. 1407.
  2. ^ Head of the Schwarzenberg Monastery Educational Center becomes the new Provincial of the Franciscan Minorites. In: orden.de . Retrieved May 16, 2020 .
  3. ^ Father Konrad Schlattmann from September chaplain at Käppele. Diocese of Würzburg , April 13, 2016, archived from the original on November 8, 2016 ; accessed on February 12, 2018 .