ESC Leaders Hold Fall Meeting in Montreal

Maria Hayes Franciscan World


MONTREAL, Quebec, Canada — Fifteen provincial ministers from the English-speaking Conference of the Order of Friars Minor gathered last week at St. Martin Retreat Centre as part of their twice-yearly meetings.

The leaders of the OFMs from Canada, Ireland, Lithuania, Malta, the United Kingdom and the United States continued discussions that they had begun in April, during their previous meeting, on issues pertaining to justice and peace, the education and formation of Franciscans, and finances.

“In terms of finances, we had a conversation via Skype with the general treasurer in Rome,” said Fr. Caoimhín O’Laoide, OFM, general definitor for the ESC, whose vice president is Kevin Mullen, OFM. “The Order’s finances are in fairly good shape; we are giving out more than we are taking in.”

He continued, “One of the main challenges for our conference is to generate vocations, to encourage young people to join the Franciscans. There’s no doubt that this way of life goes against the tide when it comes to the way the world is today. Still, I hope that the way of life of St. Francis will continue to carry on 800 years later.”

Details about the discussions on Liturgy Commission, ongoing formation, and SPUTY (solemnly professed friars under ten years); as well as a report on the meeting with the leaders of the Conventual Franciscan Conference are included in the fall newsletter of the ESC, distributed on Oct. 18.

During the Oct. 10 to 14 ESC meeting in Montreal, hosted by the Province of St. Joseph, the sub-conference of the U.S. provincial ministers met to discuss the revitalization and restructuring process. Details of this meeting were distributed to HNP friars by Provincial Secretary Michael Harlan, OFM, on Oct. 16.

Other recent news from the English-speaking Conference includes:

  • A “St. Francis Cup” road race sponsored by the friars of the Province of St. Casimir in Lithuania earlier this month. The event supported a soup kitchen in Western Lithuania, the only charity soup kitchen in that part of the country.
  • A job opening for a campus minister at St. Thomas More High School in Milwaukee
  • The release of an updated version of the FRIAR app 

Information about the English-speaking Conference can be found on its website and Facebook page.

Maria Hayes is communications coordinator for Holy Name Province.

Related Links