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, publications and ministry work. 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 contacting the Communications Office.

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

►  Peter Chepaitis, OFM and Sr. Anna Tantsits of Bethany Mnistries presented a dinner and Pentecost Reflection on May 3 at St. Bonaventure Church in Allegany, N.Y. It was titled “Lifted by Grace and Gifted by  the Spirit.”

►  Daniel Dwyer, OFM, is leading a group of 30 students on an eight-day trip to Moscow and St. Petersburg this month. It is part of his History of Russia’s Capital Cities course. In addition, Dan will serve this summer as chaplain for Bonaventure University’s Oxford study program. He will be in Oxford from the end of June through early August. The 20-year-old program is directed by Basil Valente, OFM, an instructor in SBU’s School Journalism and Mass Communiations.  On another note, Dan received the Faculty Member of the Year Award in April from Siena’s History Club.

►  Brian Jordan, OFM, celebrated Mass on April 28 at New York’s St. Patrick’s Cathedral in memory of the 25 construction workers who died in Manhattan in the last year. Brian, who has organized this Mass for three years, had forged a bond with the construction worker community while serving as chaplain at Ground Zero. In his homily, he called attention to the hardhats that were set on empty chairs, symbolizing the missing workers. An article about the Mass appeared in the April 28 issue of the Daily News.

►  An article by New York City Fire Department (FDNY) chaplain Christopher Keenan, OFM, appeared in the New York Daily News in an April 20 piece  titled, “Holy Father Echoes Jesus’ Eternal Message of Service.” He was asked to write a reflection on attending the pope’s April 19 Mass at St. Patrick’s Cathedral. In addition, Christopher’s comments about standing with Benedict XVI in the pit of Ground Zero on April 20 appeared in a recent issue of The Link, a newsletter for FDNY families who lost a firefighter in the line of duty.

► Steven Kluge, OFM, pastor of St. Francis of Assisi Parish on Long Beach Island, N.J., traveled to Assisi and Rome last month with 33 parishioners.

Jim McIntosh, OFM, has made a short video showing the new Franciscan-run center for the poor in Cochabamba, Bolivia. The center is supported by a regular donation from the Breadline at St. Francis Church on 31st Street in New York City. “We are very grateful to the friars at 31st Street,” said Jim. “Their donation pays the on-going expenses of the center, including utilities and salaries. This allows us to apply all other donations to direct services. It is a great help.” The video’s URL can be viewed at

Pictures also show the recent dental fair for children who eat at the soup kitchen. With donations received from members of the Province, secular Franciscans and other friends, each child was given a toothbrush, toothpaste and plastic cup. They were also shown how to brush their teeth and received an application of concentrated fluoride. Photos can be viewed at:

►  Cassian Miles, OFM, traveled last month to Gettysburg, Pa., to see Mychal’s Message founder, Shannon Hickey, receive the Service to Mankind Award from the West Central Pennsylvania District of the Sertoma Club International. “I am grateful and humbled,” 17-year-old Hickey told the crowd of family, friends and local community leaders.

Cassian also reports that members of Assumption Parish in Wood-Ridge, N.J., where he lives, attended a blessing by Pope Benedict XIV for disabled youth on April 19. The parish’s Mastbeth family was featured in an ABC-TV news clip that can be viewed through this link.  Amelia Mastbeth, 10, was one of 50 children at the gatherings at St. Joseph’s Seminary in Yonkers, N.Y.

► Siena College President Kevin Mullen, OFM, blessed the Patricia Stocking Brown Student Study in the Morrell Science Center on April 27. Dr. Brown, who taught biology at the college beginning in 1969, was diagnosed with cancer in 1993. She developed a national course on breast cancer for health care professionals, patients, survivors and their families. She died in 2004. In other news, Kevin interviewed graduating students and their professors on the May 3 edition of News & Views, Siena’s weekly radio program.

► Vocation Director Brian Smail, OFM, is attending a conference titled “Vocation Ministry and Issues of Immigration Law” this week in Washington, D.C. It is sponsored by the National Religious Vocation Conference.