Friar News Briefs

Jocelyn Thomas Friar News

The updates below describe activities of Holy Name friars, featuring celebrations, presentations, and ministry events. For more information, contact the friars by phone or email, connect with 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 Provincial Administration
The Provincial Council members met in the Provincial Office on Nov. 14 and 15. A summary of the meeting will be emailed to friars later this week.

Friars are invited to the annual Christmas Mass and luncheon at Holy Name Friary in Ringwood, N.J., on Dec. 20. Those planning to attend the festivities are asked to RSVP by Dec. 9 to MaryAnne Babb, a staff member of the skilled nursing home, at 973-962-7200 x 100.

Last weekend, St. Francis of Assisi Parish in New York City welcomed William Beaudin OFM, to its pastoral staff. The Nov. 13 parish bulletin said, “Fr. Bill is a talented musician and a gifted preacher. He delivered the meditation on the Seven Last Words on Good Friday in 2010. We wish him many blessings as he begins his ministry with us at St. Francis Church.” Bill served for the last two years as a member of the Franciscan Interprovincial Team that studied and facilitated the revitalization and restructuring process of the U.S. OFM provinces.

On Nov. 10, Thomas Conway, OFM, emailed a message to worshippers about the Veterans Ministry of St. Anthony Shrine in Boston that was established in March. “In partnership with the New England Center of Homeless Veterans, the Shrine serves lunch to 40 homeless veterans, men and women, and those transitioning from homelessness into independent living. On the last Tuesday of the month, veteran volunteers, along with some of our friars, serve, talk and listen with a caring and compassionate heart.”

►William DeBiase, OFM, Michael Duffy, OFM, and team members at St. Francis Inn in Philadelphia recently took part in the “Mannequin Challenge,” the latest Internet craze. The “Mannequin Challenge” is a video challenge that requires a group of people to freeze in place during an activity — essentially becoming mannequins. In this case, the St. Francis Inn soup kitchen team members “froze” during preparation of a meal. Click here to watch the video. 

►Daniel Dwyer, OFM, is in Rome, Italy, at “General Visitor School” – a weeklong training program for the friars named as General Visitors for various provinces in 2017. Dan, who is stationed at Siena College, Loudonville, N.Y., will serve as General Visitor for the Irish province, a member of the English-speaking Conference. A photo was posted on the English-speaking Conference’s Facebook page.

►David Hyman, OFM, and the African Ancestry Committee, which he chairs, are preparing an informational flyer about the 2017 retreat for young black men. He asks friars and partners-in-ministry to encourage black men between the ages of 18 and 45 to consider participating in the gathering that is being held at Holy Name College, Silver Spring, Md., from Feb. 10 to 12. The format and content of the weekend will be similar to the 2016 retreat.

►Julian Jagudilla, OFM, reports that the Migrant Center at the Church of St. Francis of Assisi, of which he is director, is planning an event called “Honoring New Americans” for 4 p.m. on Dec. 3. It will be held in San Damiano Hall at 127 West 31st Street in New York City. Those interested in attending are asked to contact the center by phone — 212-736-8500 x 305 — or by email at At the event, the center will commemorate its third anniversary.

A photo of Joseph Juracek, OFM, parochial vicar of St. Mary’s Parish, Pompton Lakes, N.J., with second graders from St. Mary’s School appeared in Nov. 3 issue of The Beacon newspaper. The caption said that the second grade class had its reconciliation enrollment recently and a ceremony was held to officially begin the preparation for the Sacrament of Reconciliation.

►David McBriar, OFM, was honored by the St. Francis of Assisi Parish community on Nov. 13 before leaving North Carolina for St. Bernardine of Siena Friary in Loudonville, N.Y. During the weekend of November 12-13, David spoke at the Masses, and greeted parishioners at a simple reception on Sunday, before embarking on his new assignment to Siena College. “There were laughs, tears, stories and fond memories exchanged,” according to staff member Marc Kielty. “However, in keeping with Fr. David’s wishes, there were no special dinners, exchanging of gifts, or listening to prepared remarks. Rather, as always, there was just David in the presence of his parishioners and friends, continuing to preach the Gospel through his gentle words, smile, and kind demeanor.” An article published in the Raleigh News Observer titled “Farewell to a Good Shepherd” described David’s service at both St Francis of Assisi Parish in Raleigh, N.C., where he was the first Franciscan pastor, and Immaculate Conception Parish in Durham, N.C., where he served from 1996 to 2005. Fr. McBriar’s departure is, for me, a reminder of how important our faith leaders are to religious communities; to our civic life and public discussion; and to us as individuals and families trying to make our way as best we can through challenging times,” wrote local columnist John Drescher. “As a good man and loyal servant departs our community, let’s remember those people of faith who lead, guide and comfort us. In giving so much of themselves, a part of them stays with us forever.” In his message in the Nov. 6 bulletin, Steven Patti, OFM, pastor of the Raleigh parish, said “so much of what this parish is today is because of David’s early vision, rooted n the teachings of the Second Vatican Council, of the Church as the people of God, gathered on Sunday around the table of the Lord and sent out into the world as the light of Christ.”

With an announcement about the Filipino Ministry of St. Francis of Assisi Parish in New York City, a photo of Ramon Razon, OFM, was published in the Nov. 13 bulletin. The student friar is shown with “two ghoulish friends at the Filipino Masquerade Party,” according to the bulletin. The announcement describes the recent fundraising masquerade party held as a fundraiser for the Ugnayan Filipino Ministry.

►Andrew Reitz, OFM, is in Italy for 10 days on a pilgrimage with 45 people. The group flew to Venice and is visiting Padua, Florence, Assisi and Rome. “We are scheduled for a papal audience and visits to the four major basilicas in Rome and the ruins of ancient Rome,” said Andrew, in the Nov. 6 bulletin of St Francis of Assisi Parish, New York City, where he is pastor. “Please keep us in your prayers, especially as we hear about the earthquakes in various regions of Italy.”

Photos of the Jubilee Mass for Daniel Riley, OFM, held at Mt. Irenaeus in West Clarksville, N.Y., in September are included in the fall 2016 issue of the Mt. Irenaeus newsletter. The issue also includes an announcement about the creation of a planned giving program called The Daniel A. Hurley, OFM, legacy established in honor of the late Daniel Hurley, OFM, who lived at Mt. Irenaeus for 23 years. Information about the Mt. Irenaeus silent auction can be found on the Mountain’s website.

►Joseph Rozansky, OFM, invites friars and partners-in-ministry to the Mass and reception with Franciscans International representatives being held on Nov. 19 at Holy Name of Jesus Church in New York City.  Joe, a resident of Chicago, is president of the international board of Franciscans International.

On Nov. 3, Paul Williams, OFM, pastor of St. Joseph Parish in Wilmington, Del, was among 28 priests honored at Nov. 3 a jubilee Mass at Joseph Church in Middleton, Del. Paul, a native of Alexandria, Va., was ordained in May 1986 at St. Francis of Assisi Church in New York City.

News for the next issue of HNP Today is requested by Nov. 23 — always the Wednesday before the newsletter’s distribution. Updates about the friars and their ministries can also be found on Facebook and Twitter.

Topics planned for future coverage in HNP Today include:

  • Formation updates about the HNP postulants and novices
  • An update on the interprovincial post-novitiate friary in Chicago

Compiled by Jocelyn Thomas

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