Mission in Sweden 
Mother Province: Province of St. Maximilian M. Kolbe in Poland (Gdańsk) 

The Franciscans (then called gråbröder or gray brothers) arrived in Sweden as early as 1233, and in Jönköping in the Småland region, in 1283. However, the Reformation introduced by King Gustav I interrupted the Franciscan presence for nearly five centuries. The Conventual Franciscan friars returned to Jönköping in 1990, where a friary was erected at the St. Francis Church, which was built by the Passionists on a different site from the original one. During the term of the Minister General Friar Lanfranco SERRINI, the youngest of the Conventual Franciscan Provinces in Poland sent three missionaries (two priests and one simply professed).
Friar Arkadiusz SKODOWSKI, who was in the pioneer community, is now the superior of the second presence in Motala. The first friar-priest to be ordained in Sweden, after many centuries, was Friar Piotr ZACHAREWICZ. He was ordained by the Most Reverend Hubertus BRANDENBURG, then Bishop of Stockholm, Sweden. The only friar of Swedish nationality is Friar Joseph M. NILSSON, a member of the General Custody of the Sacred Convent of St. Francis of Assisi in Italy who has been in Jönköping since 1993.
The friars in Jönköping serve a parish territory that covers more than 10,000 square kilometers [3861 square miles] and laid the foundation for the parish church in Värnamo. Another church has recently been purchased in Nässjö. It is a branch of the church in Jönköping but is expected to become independent.
Masses are celebrated at four different locations: Jönköping, Nässjö, Vetlanda and Eksjö. The presence in Motala is connected with the territory of the parish church in Linköping. Besides celebrating Mass at the St. Maximilian Rectory in Motala, the friars celebrate Mass at three monasteries: the Brigittine Sisters in Vadstena; the Benedictine Sisters in Omberg and the Missionary Sisters of Charity, a contemplative community in Växjö.
The friars in Sweden assist various groups such as the Militia of the Immaculata (about 300 members), the Confraternity of St. Joseph (about 100 members), the Neocatechumenal Way (about 30 members), the Secular Franciscan Order in the parishes of Linköping, Jönköping and Lund, and Teams of Our Lady in Jönköping. The friars also do pastoral ministry through social media. Moreover, around four times a year, they preach retreats in Swedish, English and Polish for various religious communities and parish groups in different parts of Sweden. Finally, it is worth mentioning that one of the friars is working with Sveriges Unga Katoliker (Young Swedish Catholics) a Catholic youth group found throughout Sweden.

Currently the mission has seven solemnly professed friars and two friaries.

Franciscan Missionary Center
General Secretariat for Mission Animation