Friar News Briefs

HNP Communications Friar News

The updates below describe activities of Holy Name Province friars, featuring celebrations, presentations, and ministry events. For more information, email the friars, contact the HNP Communications Office, or visit links to the parishes and organizations mentioned.

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

From the Administration
Highlights of the Provincial Council’s March meeting were distributed last week. The report includes feedback about two articles that were discussed – “Our Culture of Contempt” by Arthur C. Brooks, from the March 2 issue of The New York Times, and “Cornel West and Robert P. George on Christian Love in the Public Square” from America magazine. The councilors also discussed the closing of the infirmary in Ringwood, N.J., an upcoming conference on Laudato Si’ being held at Creighton University in Omaha, Neb., evaluations of the fraternal gatherings, and an update on the Praesidium reaccreditation.

► The Franciscan postulants of Holy Name College, Silver Spring, Md., traveled this month to Siena College in Loudonville, N.Y., where they learned about the Franciscan philosophy of education. They also spent time at the Graymoor Spiritual Life Center, where they got to know Franciscan postulants and novices from other communities, among them the Capuchins, Poor Clares, and Third Order. Summaries of the postulants’ recent activities can be found on their Facebook page Franciscan Interprovincial Postulancy.

► On June 4, David Bossman, OFM, will be honored by Seton Hall University, where he has worked for 30 years. David is retiring as executive director and professor of Jewish-Christian Studies at the South Orange, N.J., university. Information can be obtained at

► The cheering section for the Atlantic 10 conference basketball playoffs at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y., which took place on the weekend of March 15, was filled with enthusiastic friars as well as a crowd of alumni and students. Ross Chamberland, OFM, traveled from Western New York to Brooklyn to root for the St. Bonaventure University basketball team as it played three games at Barclays Center. “Each day, the energy level and crowd size seemingly doubled,” Ross, SBU’s assistant vice president for student engagement, said when describing the atmosphere at the event. “The fan base was consistently 70 percent to 80 percent Bonaventure people no matter how big the crowd got. We were also the only school that had a notable student presence. In addition, Fran DiSpigno, OFM, from Bonaventure, and Larry Ford from Holy Name of Jesus Parish in New York City, attended the Friday game. On Sunday, we were joined by Tom Conway, OFM, and Basil Valente, OFM, who joined me in the student section.” But for Ross – and for Gary Segrue, director of safety and security at SBU, and Rob DiFazio, director of the university’s Center for Athletics, Recreation and Leadership – it was also a working trip. “We had strategic placements in the student section to assist in crowd management. But the students were great and everyone had a wonderful time,” Ross said. At the request of numerous alums and the director of athletics, the friars celebrated Sunday Mass on the morning of the A10 championship, with about 300 in attendance. Basil, who helped create the worship space and provided the sacramental elements, served as a minister of the cup. Rev. Mr. Dale Bonocore, SBU class of ‘81, served the Mass as deacon. Despite the Bonnies losing Sunday’s final game to St. Louis University by two points, the disappointment was soundly defeated by the camaraderie and friendship shared at the weekend event.

► Last week, Javier del Angel De Los Santos, OFM, was at the Lakota reservation in Pine Ridge, S.D., with 22 others as part of St. Francis Builds ministry group. “I strongly recommend considering coming to this week-long experience. You will learn a lot about our brethren Lakota while helping them to rebuild their houses,” Javier said. The group returned to Silver Spring, Md., in time for the March 24 commemoration to St. Oscar Romero at St.Camillus Parish.

Daniel Horan, OFM, presided at a liturgy on Friday during the Los Angeles Religious Education Congress in California. Serving as deacon at the Mass was Br. Sam Nasada, OFM, a member of St. Barbara Province. Photos of the Mass, as well information about the workshops that Dan led at the March 22 to 24 Congress, can be found on the Daniel P. Horan FM Facebook page  A few days earlier, on March 19, Dan was at Virginia Theological Seminary in Alexandria, where Julianne Wallace successfully defended her doctoral thesis. Wallace, director of campus ministry at Alvernia University in Pennsylvania, is a former associate director of faith formation, worship and ministry of St. Bonaventure University. Dan, an assistant professor of systematic theology and spirituality at Catholic Theological Union in Chicago, was one of Wallace’s professors serving on the doctor of ministry thesis committee. She and Dan graduated in 2010 from Washington Theological Union.

Abraham Joseph, OFM, is scheduled to be ordained to the diaconate on April 27 in Chicago. All are welcome to the 2 p.m. Mass that will be celebrated by Bp. Paul Schmitz, OFM Cap., bishop of the Diocese of Bluefields, Nicaragua, at Saint Clare of Montefalco Church. Two other friars will be ordained deacons that day, including Br. Frederick Cabras, OFM Cap., and Br. Michael Joseph Groark, OFM Cap. In addition, Br. Anthony Kote-Witah, OFM Cap., will be ordained to the priesthood.

► The third of a four-part series of videos by Daniel Riley, OFM, on Franciscan values and the “Sisters of Wisdom” – solitude, simplicity and service – is available on the website of Mt. Irenaeus [link?], where Dan lives and works. The March 2019 issue of the Making All Things New e-letter publicizes Dan’s video reflection, as well as the Mountain’s August Companion Program – music performances by Cyprian Consiglio, OSB Cam – and the upcoming schedule of events.

Topics that will be featured in future issues of this newsletter include:

  • Profiles of silver jubilarians James Sabak, OFM, and Brian Smail, OFM
  • Commemorations of the 800th anniversary of the encounter of St. Francis of Assisi with the Sultan
  • Staff changes at the Provincial Office

— Compiled by Jocelyn Thomas

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