BRONX — Province friars formerly associated with Holy Cross Church here were given a standing ovation when the former pastor and two other friars participated in Mass on June 14 to celebrate the renaming of a street near the parish: “Franciscan Way.”
Todd Carpenter, OFM, traveled from St. Paul Church in Wilmington, Del., where he is the pastor, to celebrate the Mass and ceremony marking the renaming of a portion of Thieriot Avenue to Franciscan Way. Todd was accompanied by Claude Lenehan, OFM, of Butler, N.J., and Matthew Pravetz, OFM, of Holy Name of Jesus Friary in New York City.
“The event at Holy Cross on Sunday was great,” said Todd, who left Holy Cross last year when the Province turned over the administration of the parish to the Archdiocese of New York. Mass at 12:30 p.m. was followed by a Corpus Christi Procession, including a blessing of a time capsule and the unveiling of Franciscan Way.
“The parishioners were ecstatic,” said Todd. “They gave us a standing ovation at Mass when we were introduced by the pastor. Many people expressed how much they miss the friars.” He added, “I heard someone say, ‘It is nice to see brown robes at Holy Cross once again.’”
The church’s current pastor, Fr. Peter Pomposello, said in May that he wanted to hold a parish event to honor the friars of Holy Name Province, who had served the parish for 87 years.
Renaming a portion of the street behind the parish “Franciscan Way” is a tribute to the friars of Holy Name Province. But Todd said it also reflects the Franciscan heart of the parish. “I also believe it is important for the people of Holy Cross. They are very much filled with the Franciscan spirit, and each time they see that sign they will remember us and feel our presence.”
The photo above shows the new street sign; behind it are Matthew and Todd with Sisters Catherine Moran and Margaret McManus with the parish’s time capsule.