May 09, 2022

Program Manager

  • Franciscan Mission Service
Full time Mission Work Nonprofit Training

Job Description

Position: Program Manager

Supervisor: Executive Director

About Franciscan Mission Service: Inspired by the examples of St. Francis and St. Clare, Franciscan Mission Service shares and receives God’s unconditional love across borders through a way of life that centers marginalized voices and focuses on living out the Gospel values of intercultural encounter, radical inclusion, authentic humility, and transformative justice.

Position Description: The Program Manager will manage the Overseas Lay Mission (OLM) Program, one to two-week domestic and international short-term mission and global awareness trips, alumni relations, and some aspects of the one-year DC Service Corps (DCSC) program. The Program Manager will consistently communicate and promote the philosophy, policies, and practices of Franciscan Mission Service.

Scope of Responsibilities:


  • Oversee at least one direct report in Washington, DC (Programs Associate).
  • Oversee all international lay missioners.

Lay Missioner Discernment and Recruitment

  • Create and lead recruitment strategy, activities, and attend events.
  • Maintain timely communication with and accompany applicants/candidates.
  • Oversee application process/candidate vetting.
  • Coordinate all aspects of Discernment Days (“come and see” events and interviews for missioner candidates).

Lay Missioner Formation and Re-entry Retreat

  • Design and execute the week-long Joint Orientation for Overseas Lay Mission and DC Service Corps Programs.
  • Coordinate the 3-month Formation and 2-week Re-Entry Retreat, including curriculum planning, logistics, scheduling committed presenters for workshops, facilitating several of the required workshops and discussions, and coordinating/leading daily prayer, reflections and all related liturgies, Commissioning Mass, etc.
  • Organize weekly ministry opportunities in the DC area for Formation candidates.
  • Arrange spiritual direction for candidates during formation program.
  • Design and facilitate Mid-Formation and End-of-Formation retreats.
  • Coordinate a week-long Collaborative Formation Gathering (CFG) with other international mission organizations based out of other cities.
  • Arrange regular one-on-one check-ins with each candidate offering pastoral support.
  • Schedule all Tuesday Formation sessions for DC Service Corps participants from August-November and support Associate Director with additional ones, if needed.
  • Organize and lead Country Invitation Process with candidates and set up regular discernment meetings with Executive Director to determine country placements.
  • Deepen partnerships with Franciscan religious sisters and brothers who send candidates to participate in the FMS 3-month Formation program and accompany participants.

Support and Accompaniment of International Lay Missioners

  • Coordinate and conduct communications with missioners abroad: regular correspondence, email, video calls, navigating emergencies.
  • Manage missioner quarterly reporting and self-reflection documentation to staff.
  • Guide missioners in issues of personal growth, spirituality, community challenges, and well-being via regular video call check-ins (at least quarterly, but often monthly).
  • Oversee all missioner paperwork, health insurance, background checks, medical clearances, language school, visas, plane tickets, monthly stipends, etc.
  • Train, support, and review all missioner-led support-raising efforts.
  • Conduct annual site visits with at least 1-2 international mission sites per year.
  • Correspond regularly with international partners in order to sustain partnerships.
  • Maintain contact with returned missioners to encourage “lifelong mission” and ongoing mission opportunities. Support programmatic alumni engagement.

Short-term Mission and Global Awareness Trips

  • Promote, coordinate and lead international trips including logistics, programming, reflections, communication with participants, etc.
  • Support the Associate Director with promoting, coordinating, and leading the DC trip.


  • Design and facilitate week-long formation curriculum and week-long re-entry programming for the OFM Brothers Walking Together Program.
  • Contribute to on-going strategic planning and on-going work in Diversity, Equity Inclusion and Antiracism efforts at the organizational level.
  • Participate in regular staff meetings, program reporting and program planning.
  • Assist and participate in all major FMS events, including the annual benefit event.
  • Serve as an ambassador for FMS for annual mission appeals at churches, recruitment events, conferences and other important gatherings.
  • Maintain a working relationship with other lay mission programs: Maryknoll Lay Missioners, Society of African Missions, Columbans, Comboni, etc. and serve as liaison with other mission and international justice organizations.
  • Serve as liaison with Franciscan Service Network (FSN): attend bi-monthly conference calls, support joint recruitment efforts and plan events for FSN program participants.
  • Assist Executive Director/staff with other responsibilities as needed.

Qualities and Experience Desired:

  • Bachelor’s degree in related field, such as degree in non-profit management, theology, missiology, international studies, education, or social work.
  • A demonstrated familiarity with and appreciation of the Franciscan Charism, Catholic Social Teaching, and the Catholic faith.
  • Demonstrated personal spiritual life. Comfortable leading a faith-based team in communal prayer.
  • At least one year of mission or work experience in a cross-cultural international setting.
  • Exceptional oral and written communication skills.
  • Outstanding time management skills and ability to juggle multiple projects at once
  • Ability to relocate to the Washington, D.C. area for in-person work with one day per week of remote work available.
  • Ability and willingness to work from a non-traditional work environment for 3 months of the year (at the FMS missioner house vs. the FMS office).
  • Ability and willingness to travel internationally and domestically (2-6 trips per year).
  • Spanish language proficiency preferred, but not required.
  • Experience in program development and implementation a plus.
  • Prior supervisory experience a plus.
  • Experience in group facilitation and workshop design a plus.

This job description is not intended to be all-inclusive. Employee may perform other related duties as assigned to meet the ongoing needs of the organization. Employees must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

FMS encourages applications, even if one’s experience is not a 100% match with the position. We are seeking someone with relevant skills and experience, not a checklist that exactly matches the job description. This is an opportunity for a talented leader to grow in leadership and to deepen FMS’ mission. The Program Manager will become part of a collaborative and supportive team focused on faith-based justice and will work in a culture that supports one’s holistic well-being.

Applicants should submit a cover letter and resume to Executive Director Liz Hughes at

Interviews will begin in May and will continue until position is filled.

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