Francis in the Schools

Sufism Reoriented founded the innovative Francis in the Schools program for children from urban neighborhoods of poverty, neglect, and abuse. Murshida Conner, a psychologist with a background in adolescent development, designed the program to strengthen the children's core sense of self by celebrating the example of Francis of Assisi, who, while embracing outward poverty, lived an inspiring life of love, service, and joy. The story of Francis unfolds in a daylong field trip, which includes a lively musical play followed by an Umbrian Renaissance Faire. To date, over 10,000 children in San Francisco, Oakland, Washington, DC, Baltimore, and New York City have enjoyed these free nonsectarian programs, which provide a day of “perfect joy” for the children and their teachers and chaperones. Francis in the Schools is now a separate nonprofit organization.

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