Franciscan School of Theology

William Short, OFM

Professor of Spirituality

(760) 547-1800 Ext 209


  • S.T.D. Pontifical Gregorian University
  • S.T.L. Pontifical Gregorian University
  • M.A. Franciscan School of Theology/GTU
  • B.A. University of San Francisco

“My great passion is to help others unpack the revolutionary insights of Francis and Clare of Assisi. It is amazing to realize that these two friends had a vision of an inclusive Church community 800 years ago. I am delighted to be at the Franciscan School where I have the freedom to explore their wonderful vision, and do that in a community of brothers and sisters trying to live that vision today.”

Brother Bill, with a special love of things medieval, is a scholar equally comfortable in the fields of spirituality, Christian history and the Franciscan tradition. He researches, writes, lectures and translates in four languages. His frequent lectures, retreats and workshops outside the school educate the wider community about the Franciscan tradition. A long-time member of the Board of Trustees and a former dean and president of the school, Bill continually uses his varied talents to meet the administrative, academic and spiritual needs of the people at FST.

Selected Course Descriptions

The Franciscan Contemplative Tradition
An exploration of predominant themes in Franciscan spiritual writing with special attention to Bonaventure, Angela of Foligno, Franciscan mystics and contemplatives and the Eremetical tradition 13th to 17th centuries.

Francis of Assisi: Early Documents
Presents the principal events in the life of Francis of Assisi, and discusses the historical context of early Franciscan documents written between 1228 and 1280. Student will be able of offer a critical reading of early Franciscan documents according to the peculiar emphases of each text.

Los místicos franciscanos del siglo xvi: En espanol
Exploracion de los autores mayores de la tradicion franciscana en el “Siglo de Oro” de la mistica espanola: “Harphius” (Hendrik Herp), Bernardino de Laredo, Francisco de Osuna, Pedro de Alcantara, Juan de los Angeles; y su contribucion a la mistica de su epoca (e.g., de Teresa de Avila y el movimiento mistico entre los feligreses).

Writings of Francis and Clare of Assisi
A careful reading of the complete writings of the two saints of Assisi, exploring their “Gospel form of life,” the bases of Francis-Clarian spirituality; their images of God, Christ, Church, and the human person. All texts available in English translation