Friar News Briefs

Jocelyn Thomas 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 at

 F. Edward Coughlin, OFM, contrbuted to the January 2009 edition of the AFCO Journal: A Franciscan Perspective on Higher Education. It is titled, “Can Ethics Be Taught? Harvard’s Question, Scotus’s Ethics, and Twenty-first century College Students.”  The journal is published by the Association of Franciscan Colleges and Universities.

John Felice, OFM, led a “Lenten Reflection of Psalms and Music” on Feb. 23 at St. Francis of Assisi Church in New York City. The service was for liturgical and ministry volunteers. 

Jerome Massimino, OFM, pastor of St. Francis of Assisi Church in New York City, is quoted in the Feb. 26 issue ofCatholic New York, the publication of the Archdiocese of New York. In an article titled, “Coping With Job Loss,” he comments that he is “delighted at the success and the quality” of the employment ministry being offered at the church. “In pastoral ministry, while it is important to maintain programs that you have had for a long time, it is also good to continue to evaluate them and to look at what the current needs are and how we can respond to them.” he said, “In this tough economic climate, that is a need that is staring us right in the face.” The program fosters growth, he added. 

Provincial Minister John O’Connor, OFM, and Provincial Secretary Michael Harlan, OFM, and Thomas Conway, OFM, a member of the Provincial Council,were among the friars who gathered Feb. 23 for the first in a series of HNP fraternal gatherings at St. Anthony’s Friary in St. Petersburg, Fla. Francis Gunn, OFM, the Province’s coordinator for strategic planning, was also at this gathering.John also visited two foundations of the Poor Clares in South Florida.

Mark Reamer, OFM, presented two workshops on Feb. 24 about planning and celebrating the funeral liturgy at St. Francis of Assisi Parish in Raleigh, N.C., where he is pastor. 

A letter to the editor by Thaddeus Sapio, OFM, of Anderson, S.C., appeared in the Feb. 26 issue of the Anderson Independent. He writes about the rights of immigrants, criticizing efforts to stop illegal workers from working.

Vocation Director Brian Smail, OFM, facilitated a vocation weekend Feb. 21 to 22 at St. Francis of Assisi  Friary in New York City. Potential candidates met residents of the Midtown friary during their visit and learned about Franciscan life. Brian will facilitate a discernment retreat March 20 to 22 at St. Francis Springs Prayer Center in Stoneville, N.C.

Ignatius Smith, OFM,  traveled with parishioners from Holy Cross Church, Callicoon, N.Y., where he is pastor, to Washington, D.C., on Jan. 22 for the annual March for Life on the Mall. “We were amazed at the large crowd of pro-life supporters,” he said. “It was a cornucopia of people of all ages and nationalities. Among the people who were standing up for what they believe were young couples pushing strollers, older people being given a supportive arm,  and Jewish, Protestant and Catholic groups, all united for the right of every human being to live. It was an honor to make our voices heard and to show our support for life. We pray that all people of goodwill be challenged to intensify their efforts to promote a culture of life throughout our country.”

Dennis Tamburello, OFM, took a group of students from Siena College in Loudonville, N.Y., to St. Francis Inn in Philadelphia last week to volunteer at the soup kitchen.

Submission of news for the next issue of HNP Today is requested by March 11. Friars in the media can be found by visiting the communications page of the HNP Web site and clicking on Friars in the News.

 — Compiled by Jocelyn Thomas