Franciscan Passages, a501(c)3 non-profit entity, was born in the spring of 2010. It is through this endeavor that Julie McElmurry creates and leads retreats and presentations for Retreat Centers, Church groups, schools, Secular Franciscan Fraternities, Catholic Volunteer Network programs, Colleges and University groups.
The foundation of every presentation is upon the writings of St. Francis of Assisi, St. Clare of Assisi, or by their contemporaries. Early Franciscan writings have been translated into modern, readily accessible in English and Spanish and contain a wealth of riches which are yours to explore.
Julie McElmurry, M.S., M.A.
Hi. I will travel to your group, wherever you are. Are you looking for a qualified, experienced and entertaining speaker or retreat leader? Let’s talk. I’m here to serve.
I have lived among, worked with and learned from Franciscan men and women since the year 2000. I earned the Master of Science degree in Religion and Religious Education from Fordham University and the Master of Arts degree in Franciscan Studies from the Franciscan Institute of St. Bonaventure University. I’ve been teaching others about Saints Francis and Clare of Assisi since 2010 when I founded Franciscan Passages. I’ve offered retreats, workshops and parish missions in over 15 states and one other country (Honduras). I am not a native speaker of Spanish but I do offer everything I do in Spanish as well as English. I work happily with translators as needed. My focus is on the writings of Saints Francis and Clare and I enjoy delving into their poems, letters, admonitions, prayers, deathbed testaments and more with people like you.
Mrs. Julie McElmurry holds a Master of Science in Religion and Religious Education from Fordham University in The Bronx and a Master of Arts in Franciscan Studies from St. Bonaventure University’s Franciscan Institute in Olean, New York. In 2010, she founded Franciscan Passages, through which she offers her services as a speaker on the writings of St. Francis and St. Clare of Assisi to Franciscan fraternities, faith-based volunteer programs, church groups, schools, and retreat centers. It is her goal and her passion to share what she has learned with others.
Prior to undertaking the mission and ministry of Franciscan Passages, Julie served as Campus Minister at Wake Forest University and Salem College, as an employee of the Diocese of Charlotte, from 1999 to 2010. She served under the direction of Fr. Jude DeAngelo, OFM Conv., a Franciscan priest who is now the Chaplain at Catholic University of America. During that time, Julie honed her teaching and public speaking skills by instructing 22 semesters of Service Learning classes at Salem College. While working as a Campus Minister, Julie organized more than 20 mission trips to Central America, India, and various cities in the U.S., where the students served in soup kitchens, painted buildings owned by nonprofits, and interacted with people from impoverished areas. Her groups contributed thousands of hours to the cleanup effort following Hurricane Katrina. Since launching Franciscan Passages, Julie has continued her community service by offering retreats in Spanish and English for religious orders, school children, and young people on service missions in Honduras.
To date, Julie has given presentations on St. Francis and his writings in 12 states, the District of Columbia, and Honduras. One of her specialty areas is creating and leading retreats for those who are in a “year of service” program, such as the 200 programs that make up the Catholic Volunteer Network. She is great at engaging 100% attention from a large or small group; she breaks down an obscure text into an understandable scenario so the audience can really get to know St. Francis and what he intended his life to mean. People from her audiences tell her that her words inspire them to want to learn even more.