Happy Birthday to Our Brothers!
The distinction of the most senior friar birthdays this month is shared by a trio of nonagenarians – Thomas Murphy, OFM, his 94th on Aug. 8; Timothy Dauenhauer, OFM, his 91st on Aug. 16, and David Hyman, OFM, his 91st on Aug. 22. They are among 26 HNP friars celebrating August birthdays.
Thomas, who lives at St. Anthony Friary in St. Petersburg, Florida, served for 22 years as the regional spiritual assistant for more than 800 members of the Secular Franciscan Order within the 40 fraternities of the Five Franciscan Martyrs Region in Florida, South Georgia, and Lower Alabama. He co-authored A Pater Noster Psalter: Praying the Psalms in the Light of the Lord’s Prayer, which to his knowledge is probably the first book in the history of the Church to present all 150 Psalms – the primary prayer of Hebrew scriptures – in full correlation with the seven phrases of the Lord’s Prayer.
Timothy, who lives with the fraternity at Ss. Columba-Brigid Friary in Buffalo, New York, worked for decades with the Big Brothers of America and Boys Club programs, often spending his own money to help teens obtain their driver’s license, save for college, and attend vocation school. He initiated construction of a teen center in 1984 across from St. Patrick Church when he was stationed at the Buffalo, New York, parish.
David hasn’t let age slow him down, as he still serves in retreat ministry. Last year at St. Francis Springs Prayer Center in Stoneville, North Carolina, where he was a staff member, he presented a daylong Lenten retreat, speaking about Lent as a time for extraordinary spiritual growth. During his ministerial life, he has been a high school teacher, worked in formation, served in prison chaplaincy and campus ministry, and provided pastoral and sacramental care as pastor of two parishes.
The lone octogenarian this month is Christopher Keenan, OFM, who celebrated his 81st on Aug. 7. Christopher, who lives at St. Anthony Friary in Butler, New Jersey, was the longtime chaplain of the Fire Department of the City of New York. He lived with the friar fraternity at the College of Mount St. Vincent in the Bronx, New York, for many years, serving in campus ministry and as an associate of the Sisters of Charity.
A group of nine friars are celebrating a septuagenarian birthday: Thomas Donovan, OFM, his 79th on Aug. 2, who in 2020 marked his golden jubilee as a professed friar, and who after 40 years with the western Canada-based Franciscan Province of Christ the King, transferred to HNP after working for three years at St. Anthony Shrine in Boston, Massachusetts; Richard Mucowski, OFM, his 79th on Aug. 30, who served nine years as pastor of a parish in Wood-Ridge, New Jersey, right up until HNP withdrew from ministry; Timothy Miskowski, OFM, his 77th on Aug. 21, who celebrated his silver jubilee of first profession in 2019 and lives at the St. Francis Friary on West 31st Street in New York City; Francis Pompei, OFM, his 76th on Aug. 1, an accomplished author who has worked in youth and adult retreat ministry and lives in Liverpool, New York; John Hogan, OFM, his 76th on Aug. 26, whose ministries have included spiritual direction, retreat ministry, and early formation, and who participates in vocation ministry, meeting with discerners during weekend retreats at St. Anthony Friary in Florida;
Jerome Massimino, OFM, his 75th on Aug. 24, so beloved by the Siena College community that a scholarship was established in his name, and who served as a hospital chaplain in St. Petersburg, where he lives at St. Anthony Friary; Michael Blastic, OFM, his 74th on Aug. 6, widely known for giving Franciscan-themed retreats and feted four years ago for his achievements in academia as a Franciscan scholar and author with a collection of peer writings; Jacques LaPointe, OFM, his 71st on Aug. 6, who has ministered in diverse communities and whose assignment in Japan, the first after his ordination, resulted in collaborative efforts with a local citizens group that led to reform in Japanese laws to protect children from sexual exploitation; and James Scullion, OFM, his 70th on Aug. 18, pastor of St. Francis of Assisi Church in Triangle, Virginia.
The group of sexagenarians celebrating a birthday this month includes: William Beaudin, OFM, his 69th on Aug. 17, parochial vicar at St. Patrick-St. Anthony Church and guardian of the friary; Lawrence Hayes, OFM, his 69th on Aug. 24, HNP’s Provincial Vicar and the Provincial Minister-elect of the new U.S. Franciscan province; Stephen Kluge, OFM, his 68th on Aug. 7, parochial vicar at Sacred Heart Church in Tampa, Florida; Paul Keenan, OFM, his 66th on Aug. 11, a member of the staff at St. Anthony Shrine in Boston; Paul Santoro, OFM, his 66th on Aug. 14, who has served in education and formation ministry and provides drug and alcohol counseling at St. Anthony Shrine; Kenneth Paulli, OFM, his 63rd on Aug. 21, vice president and chief of staff, and associate professor of education at Siena College; Basil Valente, OFM, his 62nd on Aug. 11, National Vocation Director of the new province; and Francis Critch, OFM, his 62nd on Aug. 22, whose humor and culinary skills entertain viewers of FranciscanTV’s most popular series, FriarChef, where he shares and demonstrates main dish and dessert recipes.
Rounding out the August birthday list are Scott Brookbank, OFM, his 59th on Aug. 11, pastoral associate at St. Francis of Assisi Church in Long Beach Island, New Jersey, and a licensed mental health counselor; Lawrence Ford, OFM, his 58th on Aug. 18, who has been co-director of the Revitalization and Restructuring (R&R) Office, helping to guide the unification process of the US-6 provinces; Cidouane Joseph, OFM, his 58th on Aug. 29, a member of St. Anthony Shrine in Boston; and the youngest members of the birthday group – Junior Casas Rodriguez, OFM, his 36th on Aug. 28, and Tyler Grudi, OFM, his 27th on Aug. 12, a graduate of St. Bonaventure University who professed his first vows in 2021.
Blessings and all good to our brothers on their birthday!