Friar News Briefs

Jocelyn Thomas Friar News

The updates below feature activities of Holy Name friars, including their celebrations, presentations, and ministry events. For more information, visit links to the parishes and organizations mentioned, contact the friars by phone or email, or connect with the HNP Communications Office.

To provide news briefs for future articles, email information to communications director Jocelyn Thomas at

► Lawrence Anderson, OFM, and Sean O’Brien, OFM, were introduced last week to the Siena College community in a news release titled “Siena Welcomes New Chaplain and Franciscan Center Leaders.” “At the core of Siena College’s Franciscan tradition is a commitment to service and the cultivation of a vibrant community of faith,” the release reads. “This year, the commitment has been revitalized by new staff members in the Office of the College Chaplain and the Franciscan Center for Service and Advocacy.”

► Michael Calabria, OFM, gave several presentations at Georgetown University recently. On Oct. 2, he was a co-speaker with Fr. Greg Schenden, SJ, for a program on “Brothers in Christ: Ignatius of Loyola and Francis of Assisi,” sponsored by the campus ministry at Georgetown University. Also on Oct. 2, he taught a class on Muslim prayer and prayers spaces for a course called “The Problem of God.” “On Sept. 30, I was invited by renowned Islamic scholar John Esposito to speak on Francis’ encounter with the Sultan for a class on Islam and the West,” Michael commented. “From Sept. 26 to 27, I presented a program at the Franciscan Spiritual Center in Aston, Pa., on ‘The Interwoven World: the Christian-Islamic Fabric of Culture.’”

► The Province’s friary in Margate, N.J., will be closed during Columbus Day weekend while the Provincial Councilors hold a meeting-retreat. Friars interested in reserving a room for other dates may contact John Capozzi, OFM, curator.

► The work that pastor Todd Carpenter, OFM, does for the Latino community of St. Paul’s Parish in Wilmington, Del., is featured in an article in the October issue of Delaware Today magazine. “While National Hispanic Heritage Month runs Sept. 15 to Oct. 15, in this house of worship, in the renovated chapel, there’s always a reason to celebrate the culture while finding a compassion that fills in gaps in the greater community’s social services,” said the article, titled “St Paul’s Church a Haven for Hispanics: the Rev. Todd Carpenter Opens His Heart and Arms to All.” “Carpenter often focuses his homilies on Pope Francis – not only his theology, but his everyday acts.” A few days earlier, Todd was given a surprise birthday party by parishioners, who made a video of the event.

► George Corrigan, OFM, is leading a pilgrimage for parishioners of Sacred Heart Parish, Tampa, Fla., to Franciscan places in Italy.

► Daniel Dwyer, OFM, gave several presentations recently. On Oct. 1, he spoke at the rededication of Siena College’s property at 33 Fiddler’s Lane. That property, home of the alumni office, will now be known as Serra Manor. In his remarks, Dan described the history of Fr. Junipero Serra, OFM, and of the Franciscans in the Americas. Special exhibits featured items from Siena’s rare book collection relating to Fr. Serra and the California missions, as well as items from the collection of Native American Art and artifacts of Capistran Hanlon, OFM. On Sept. 27, Daniel gave the invocation at the dedication of a new interpretive sign at the Schuyler Flatts Cultural Park in Colonie, N.Y. The sign commemorates two prominent colonial figures: Arent Van Curler and St. Issac Jogues. According to the Troy Record: “The sign… relates to the early occupation of the site originally owned by Arent Van Curler. He helped French Jesuit priest Isaac Jogues escape from the Mohawk Indians. Jogues was held captive until he escaped from them while they fished and traded at Fort Orange. He slept in Van Curler’s barn. Van Curler later became the founder of Schenectady.”

► The Sept. 28 issue of The Carpenter, newsletter of St. Joseph Parish, features Gerald Hopeck, OFM, who moved to Anderson, S.C., this summer to serve a yearlong internship. The publication describes Gerald’s education and career, as well as his family and hobbies. At St Joseph’s, the article noted, “He has found everyone friendly and welcoming.” Gerald will focus on religious education, youth ministry, adult faith formation and outreach. “The more we form community, the more we can do together,” he said.

► Jacques LaPointe, OFM, was honored with a Legislative Sentiment by Maine’s state representative Bernard Ayotte on Sunday, Sept. 28 at St. Bruno-St. Remi Catholic Church in Van Buren. This sentiment recognizes Jacques’s “work and dedication to the people of St. Peter Chanel Parish and his role in the 2014 World Acadian Congress,” according to an Oct. 7 article in the St. John Valley Times

► Provincial Minister Kevin Mullen, OFM, is in Alberta, Canada, this week participating in the meeting of the provincial minsters of the English-speaking Conference. On Saturday, he will be in New Jersey for the October meeting of the Provincial Council.

► On Sept. 25, Councilor Joseph Nangle, OFM, Provincial Vicar Lawrence Hayes, OFM, and Provincial Secretary Michael Harlan, OFM, attended a fundraising reception for Pax Christi International held at the Provincial Office in New York City. Joseph has served as the Pax Christi USA Ambassador of Peace. Marie Dennis and Bishop Kevin Dowling of South Africa, co-presidents of Pax Christ International, offered “very compelling and moving presentations on the work and the raison d’etre of their organization,” said Lawrence. “Rooted in local initiatives of many sorts across the globe, Pax Christi International sponsors or collaborates in programs that offer hope, human dignity and the possibility of truth and reconciliation in areas where violence abounds. Bishop Dowling, in a deeply vulnerable way, shared how his lifetime of involvement with peacemaking was born of his personal experience of individuals whose suffering stemmed from systemic violence (against women, people of color, etc.) and compelled him to respond. At the end of the reception, participants were invited to consider making a donation to support the work of Pax Christi International.”

► At the annual meeting last month, Paul O’Keeffe, OFM, was elected chair of the English-Speaking Conference’s ISME committee, the Interprovincial Secretaries for Missionary Evangelization. From Sept. 16 to 18, Paul and mission directors from six OFM provinces had gathered in Albuquerque, N.M., for discussions with mission directors and representatives from the ESC provinces of Assumption, Our Lady of Guadalupe, Sacred Heart, St. John the Baptist, St. Barbara and St. Joseph, as well as Kim Smolik, director of the Franciscan Mission Service in Washington. In June, Paul was named as the HNP moderator of missionary evangelization.

► Steven Patti, OFM, was formally installed on Sept. 13 as pastor of St. Francis of Assisi Parish, Raleigh, N.C., by Bishop Michael Burbidge.

► Several days before the feast of St. Francis, prints of the icon “St. Francis: Le Fou de Dieu” by Michael Reyes, OFM, were made available for purchase through Trinity Stores. Michael, a resident of Holy Name College, Silver Spring, Md., has been studying with master iconographer Robert Lentz, OFM

► A reflection about St. Francis by Daniel Riley, OFM, was included in the October 2014 e-letter of Mt. Irenaeus Franciscan Retreat. “As a youth of his time and a ‘mendicant of meaning’ who also enjoyed solitude, Francis entered very busy villages and marketplaces. While there he would gather others and they would trail off to a mountain place, to ‘the road,’ welcoming others to join them and ‘try the Gospel way of life,’” wrote Daniel. During the next month, he will be taking his ministry on the road, celebrating Mass for St. Bonaventure University alumni in three locations in the metro New York area: New York City on Nov. 3, Wood-Ridge, N.J., on Nov. 15 and Mineola, N.Y., on Nov. 16.

► The history of St. Anthony of Padua Parish in Greenville, N.C., is chronicled in an Oct. 8 article in The Greenville News. In the article, pastor Patrick Tuttle, OFM, and Theresa Lockhart, a founding member of the St. Anthony community, reflected on the church’s 75 years. Lockhart recounts life as a black Catholic in Greenville in the 1940s, the start of St. Anthony’s in the basement of nearby St. Francis Hospital and participating in the parish’s initial First Communion ceremony. The parish will be commemorating its 75th anniversary next week.

► Vocation director Basil Valente, OFM, is helping to lead a college men’s vocation retreat on Oct. 8 at Siena College. A video showing Daniel Dwyer, OFM, a regional vocation director and co-organizer of the retreat, talking with one of his students can be found on the Be a Franciscan Facebook page. An Asian-American vocation retreat, guided by Julian Jagudilla, OFM, is planned for Oct. 25.

News for the next HNP Today e-letter is requested by Oct. 15, always the Wednesday before distribution. Updates about the friars and their ministries can also be found on Facebook and Twitter.

Topics planned for future issues include:

  • Discussions regarding the reconfiguration of the OFM provinces in the United States
  • Jubilee celebration on Nov. 12
  • Activities of the 2014-15 postulants
  • Francis Medals presented by friars in Anderson and Raleigh

 Compiled by Jocelyn Thomas