Sophia College is proudly founded in the Franciscan tradition.
St Francis of Assisi, patron saint of animals and ecology, renounced his family’s wealth to devote his life to God and living the Gospel to poverty, humility and compassion. Francis’ deep love of God overflowed into a love for all God’s creatures – expressed not only through his tender care of lepers and his attempt to negotiate peace, but also in his prayers of thanking for creation, his sermons preached to animals and his insistence that all creatures are kin – brothers and sisters. St Francis was a person well before his time, as he recongised that we exist in an ‘integral ecology’ where all of creation is interconnected and interdependent. Although there have been many words crafted about Franciscan spirituality, it is essentially a spirituality marked by its simplicity. The Franciscan tradition founded by Saint Francis of Assisi and Saint Clare embraces simplicity, joy and profound reverence for every person, all of creation and the Creator of all.
The term living stones is deeply connected to both the Catholic and Franciscan traditions. Living stones refer to the ‘building up’ of God’s kingdom and the ‘foundation’ of a tradition. St Francis teaches us to keep our eyes on God, to respect creation and to be the good example of joy, hope, and peace in the world. To live as St Francis did, we are called to constantly to refer all good to God and demonstrate this through service and respect of others. As a Catholic college following in the Franciscan tradition, we have adopted the values of wisdom and love to guide us in our relationships with ourselves and others, with our learning and with all creation. In addition, we have identified four living stones on which we hope to build strong foundations for Sophia College.