Friar News Briefs

HNP Communications Friar News

NEW YORK — Below are news items about some of the many activities of Holy Name friars, including their presentations, outreach, and celebrations. More information can be obtained by visiting links to the parishes and organizations mentioned, by contacting the friars by phone or e-mail, and by connecting with the Communications Office.

To provide news briefs for future issues of HNP Today, e-mail Jocelyn Thomas

 Fred Dilger, OFM, will be featured on NBC’s “Today” show, as part of a segment produced about the Province’s creative vocation advertising. The reporter featured the Province’s “Life Shift” subway ad, which has been getting a lot of media attention lately, as well as the life shift that Fred made when he joined the friars six years ago.

 Francis Di Spigno, OFM, Robert Menard, OFM, Jacek Orzechowski, OFM Joseph Rozansky, OFM, Francis Soucy, OFM, and William “Jud” Weiksnar, OFM, traveled recently to the Holy Land. Highlights of their March 1 to 10 trip to Israel and Palestine will be provided in a future issue of this newsletter.

 St. Patrick-St. Anthony Church in Hartford, Conn., distributed a letter from Pastor Thomas Gallagher, OFM, last week about a bill introduced by the Connecticut State Legislature that tried to restructure governance of churches so that parishes would be run by lay boards. Representatives of Connecticut parishes participated in a public hearing and large protest at the State Capitol on March 11.

 On March 1, “American Idol” winner David Cook was congratulated by Kevin Mackin, OFM, president of Mount Saint Mary College in Newburgh, N.Y. Cook sang at the college in the first New York stop on his solo tour. A sold-out audience filled the college’s Aquinas Theatre, according to Janet Gianopoulos, assistant to the president for community relations, who adds, “A week after winning the popular TV program, 11 of Cook’s songs hit the Billboard Hot 100 chart.”

 Guardian Richard McFeely, OFM, and the friars of St. Anthony Residence in Boston hosted HNP Communications Director Jocelyn Thomas during her recent visit to St. Anthony Shrine, where she met with staff members on March 6. Fourteen friars live at the residence, which Thomas found to be “comfortable and very hospitable.” 

 Emeric Meier, OFM, led a presentation on March 3 at St. Anthony Shrine titled “In the Wilderness of the Media.” He provided tools for learning the “whole story,” he said, especially as it pertains to the Middle East conflict. An essay by Emeric, “Clothes and the Man,” appeared in the March 1 bulletin of the Shrine.

 Provincial Minister John O’Connor, OFM, spoke on March 15 at the Ecumenical Advocacy Days in Washington, D.C. An EAD attendee, Franciscan Acton Network staff member Marc DelMonico, said that “it was a pleasure to have John present.” 

 Gene Pistacchio, OFM, of Boston, and Sr. Linda Greenwood, OSF, facilitated a parish mission at St. Catherine’s in Warwick, R.I., from Feb. 28 to March 4.  Uniting the feminine and masculine dimensions of Franciscan spirituality, the mission focused on the Peace Prayer, using personal stories, chants, recorded music, scriptural themes, and Franciscan history, Gene said.

A personal form of reverence was expressed by each participant toward the Book of the Gospels. Some people kissed the Book, said Gene, while some held it firmly in their arms. Others made a profound bow. The Paschal Candle, cradled in the arms of Sr. Linda, was used to evoke the names of loved ones who were baptized, made entry into the church as neophytes, professed marital and/or religious vows, and those who were eulogized. Sr. Linda and Gene work in the Spiritual Direction Ministry at St. Anthony Shrine. 

 Matthew Pravetz, OFM, presented “The Call of Matthew, the Tax Collector” on March 3 at Holy Name Parish in Manhattan.

 Daniel Sulmasy, OFM, appeared in the March 3 issue of the New York Daily News in a story titled, “Custom-made Babies Delivered: Fertility Clinic Doctor’s Design-A-Kid Offer Creates Uproar.”

 Photos of Gonzalo Torres, OFM, and other scenes of Manhattan’s Holy Name of Jesus Church can be found on the parish’s Web site. 

News for the next issue of HNP Today is requested by March 25. Up-to-date information about friars in the media can be found by visiting the communications page of the HNP Web site and clicking on Friars in the News.