Friar News Briefs

HNP Communications Friar News

The updates below describe activities of Holy Name friars and feature 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
A summary of the discussions held at the August Provincial Council meeting was distributed to friars last week. It included information about the Province’s committees and directorates, the HNP task force on elder friars, recommendations for Arch Street and 31st Street, a meeting on Sept. 21 for new guardians and pastors, and preparation for the Aug. 21 to 24 meeting about the revitalization and reconfiguration process that took place in Wappingers Falls, N.Y. Details about the Wappingers Falls meeting are included in this newsletter story.
The interprovincial postulancy program in Silver Spring, Md., is holding a welcoming ceremony on Aug. 31 for men joining the program, including eight from Holy Name Province. More details will be provided in a future issue of this newsletter.

► Photos of friars and partners-in-ministry viewing the Aug. 21 solar eclipse attracted attention on social media. Among the friars shown were Frank Critch, OFM, of St. Peter Claver Parish in Macon, Ga., and Christopher VanHaight, OFM, of Immaculate Conception Parish in Durham, N.C. Siena College also hosted a viewing for the community in Loudonville, N.Y.

► Christopher Dunn, OFM, reports that August is the month of St. Rose in Lima, Peru. “This year, to celebrate the 400th anniversary of her death, the Diocese of Lurín organized an extraordinary one-day visit of her relics to selected parishes in the diocese. Anthony Wilson, OFM, arranged for the relics to pass through Santa Ana Parish. The procession and motorcade bearing her relics was received on the main avenue that passes through the parish – one block from the church – on Saturday evening, Aug. 19, by a large group of parishioners, the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary who minister in the parish, and all the friars. A brief prayer service was held. The motorcade included representatives from the Dominicans, the diocesan vicar general, the local dean, other priests, and a large contingent of police. A Mass was celebrated later in the evening in a neighboring parish. St. Rose’s relics are housed in a church in downtown Lima located about 90 minutes from Santa Ana Parish via public transportation.” Chris added, “St. Rose was born on April 20, 1586 and died Aug. 24, 1617. She was the first saint born in the Americas and is patroness of the Americas, the Philippines, Peru, Lima, the police, and the armed forces. She was a secular Dominican.”

► On Aug. 19, three friars stationed in Chicago – Casey Cole, OFM, Javier Del Angel De Los Santos, OFM, and Daniel Horan, OFM – attended the profession of Br. Maxwell Klug, OFM, of Assumption BVM Province at St. Clare Catholic Church in Wind Lake, Wis. “We went with Br. John Barker, OFM, of St. John the Baptist Province because it was just a few hours away, and Max is an incoming community member of the Blessed Giles Friary, so we wanted to support our brother during his profession of solemn vows,” said Daniel. “It was a nice liturgy and included a hospitable reception. We were delighted to be present for it.”

► A photo of Erick López, OFM, appeared in the Archdiocese of Washington’s “El Pregonero,” a Spanish newspaper. It shows him and a parishioner of St. Camillus Parish in Silver Spring, Md., speaking at a vigil for the people who were affected by a fire and gas explosion in an apartment building in Silver Spring a year ago.

► On Aug. 19, Hugh Macsherry, OFM, celebrated Mass at St. Anthony of Padua Church in Camden, N.J., as a farewell event to the community that the friars of Holy Name Province had served since 1985. The parish is merging into St. Joseph Pro-Cathedral Parish in East Camden. “It was a very nice event,” said Hugh, who had served at St. Anthony’s since 2011 and as pastor since 2014. “The three priests who will be serving the new parish also attended, along with Fr. David Rivera, who attributes his vocation to the friars. Several hundred people attended the luncheon that followed the Mass. It was an emotional time. We said farewell and also thank you. As much as the friars wanted to express our gratitude, the parishioners also said thank you to us. The friars gave the parish a painting, which shows St. Joseph and St. Anthony holding up the Christ child to symbolize the joining of the two parishes.” Other friars who had been stationed at St. Anthony Parish participated in last week’s festivities. They included Paul Breslin, OFM, George Camacho, OFM, Todd Carpenter, OFM, Juan de la Cruz Turcios, OFM, Gerald Mudd, OFM, Joseph Nangle, OFM, and Jud Weiksnar, OFM.

► Paul O’Keeffe, OFM, moderator for missions and evangelization and associate director of the Province’s Franciscan Missionary Union, is arranging two 2018 trips to Cuba for friars. They are scheduled for April 14 to 21 and Nov. 3 to 10. Both trips will enable participants to confront the realities of life in Cuba by interacting with the friar community, parishioners and other local people, experience the charm and vibrancy of Cuban culture and visit a small Christian community and several farms to see how rural life differs from life in the city. Since space is limited, Paul asks friars who are interested to contact him at A flyer provides details about the trip, including cost.

► On Aug. 5, one day before the 72nd anniversary of the bombing of Hiroshima, Patrick Sieber, OFM, and about 30 other people protested the production of nuclear weapons at Lockheed Martin’s King of Prussia, Pa., campus. During the protest, Patrick held a sign displaying a picture of a little girl who witnessed the destruction of her city and bearing the words “Hiroshima, Nagasaki, Never again.” “She was just one of the thousands of children who were destroyed by the bomb and its aftermath. The name of the bomb that was dropped was called ‘Little Boy.’ It was such an abuse of children,” said Patrick. “The protestors held a prayer service on Lockheed Martin’s campus and were interrupted and arrested. Four of us were taken away in handcuffs. After an hour, we were released. We must pay a fine or face jail time.” Patrick is marking his 52nd anniversary as a Franciscan friar and his 42nd year of protesting “Little Boy.”

News for the next issue of HNP Today is requested by Sept. 6 – always the Wednesday before publication. Updates about the friars and their ministries can also be found on Facebook and Twitter.

Topics planned for future coverage in HNP Today include:

  • Gathering in October of friars involved in Hispanic ministry
  • The stories of several of HNP’s retired friars
  • St. Bonaventure University’s new ministry center

— Compiled by Jocelyn Thomas

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