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 ministry, advocacy, education, 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

►  Christopher Keenan, OFM, was mentioned in the May 2008 issue of The Link, the newsletter for FDNY families from the counseling service unit of the Fire Department of New York. In an article titled, “Faith,” about Pope Benedict XVI’s 2008 visit to New York and Ground Zero, Christopher, FDNY chaplain, said he “felt like Pope Benedict’s visit brought with it  a sense of spiritual transformation. There was this felt experience that the grief beyond all grief could begin to see the light. We truly knew that the God of our understanding was with us.”

The publication said that Christopher, “who spent several nights a week searching for remains at Ground Zero in the months after 9/11, said he feels like he saw the face of God in the face of every responder he saw at the WTC site in the months he was there … and reflected on this as he saw the Pope walk down the bridge into the  site.” Also mentioned in The Link was Dympna Judge Jessich, sister of the late Mychal Judge, OFM.

►  Joseph Macaluso, OFM, who was simply professed last month, appears in a photo in The Eastwick Press in Hoosick, N.Y., about the June 26 graduation of St. Mary’s Academy, where Joseph worked before joining the friars.   For two years, he taught fifth and seventh grade religion and served as baseball and soccer coach. A scholarship was created in honor of Joe’s involvement in the school, according to Brian Belanger, OFM, guardian of the St. Bernadine of Siena friary, where Joseph lives this summer. The scholarship is called the Franciscan Spirit Award. Joe is at Siena studying philosophy.

►   Provincial Minister John O’Connor, OFM, attended a jubilee celebration of the Ursuline Sisters at the College of New Rochelle in New Rochelle, N.Y., on July 16.

►  Brian Smail, OFM, participated in a National Religious Vocation Conference (NRVC) workshop last week at Chicago Theological Union on “Behavior Assessment of Candidates to Religious Life.” He reports that NRVC asked him to serve on its Committee on Religious Priesthood. The purpose of the committee is to help provide tools that vocation directors can use to discuss what is unique about religious priesthood.