Kevin Mullen Elected Provincial Minister

Jocelyn Thomas In the Headlines

LOUDONVILLE, N.Y. — The friars of Holy Name Province have a new administration. Last week, at the triennial chapter, they elected Kevin Mullen, OFM, as their 16th Provincial Minister, and Lawrence Hayes, OFM, as Provincial Vicar, as well as new Council made up of three ordained and three non-ordained friars.

Kevin, elected June 4, has served since 2007 as president of Siena College and Lawrence, elected June 5, has been pastor of Immaculate Conception Church in Durham, N.C., since 2013.

Before voting, the friars listened to the five candidates for Provincial Minister engage in a round table discussion, responding to questions from Dominic Perri, facilitator of the chapter, and friars at large. The candidates gave their opinions on issues presented in the General Visitor’s report, as well as other topics, ranging from ideas for the Province’s long-term care facility and vacation houses, to the role of brothers.

The new leaders succeed John O’Connor, OFM, and Dominic Monti, OFM, who have served as Provincial Minister and Vicar respectively since 2005.

“Being elected Provincial Minister by my brothers in the Franciscan Order is a tremendous honor,” said Kevin in a Siena College press release. “I look forward to serving them well as I lead Holy Name Province the best way I know how — with compassion and through collaboration — as we continue to help communities and individuals in the spirit of an 800-year-old tradition founded by St. Francis of Assisi.”

As Provincial Minister, Kevin will oversee the long-range planning and day-to-day operations of the 110-year-old Province and its nearly 300 friars who serve in communities on the East Coast and abroad in Asia and South America. Kevin will also represent Holy Name Province to the Order.

To take on this position, Kevin will resign as Siena College president, effective August 4. F. Edward Coughlin, OFM, vice president for Franciscan mission at St. Bonaventure University, Allegany, N.Y., will assume the role of interim president of Siena.

Biographical Background
Kevin, a native of Paterson, N.J., served as a Provincial Councilor for 18 years in six terms, some nonconsecutive. A Franciscan friar for 38 years and a priest for 34, he has held a variety of leadership roles, including serving as Holy Name Province’s director of finance. Before taking the position of Siena president, Kevin served as director of the college’s Franciscan Center for Service and Advocacy and conducted seminars about Franciscan service. Prior to serving at Siena, he had been director and guardian of St. Anthony Shrine in Boston, and pastor and guardian of St. Leo’s Church in Elmwood Park, N.J. In addition, he has chaired the board of directors of St. Francis House, a multi-faceted outreach ministry to Boston’s homeless and marginalized.

Kevin’s career has included faculty positions at Christ the King Seminary in East Aurora, N.Y.; Pope John XXIII National Seminary in Weston, Mass., Weston Jesuit School of Theology in Cambridge, Mass., the Franciscan Institute at St. Bonaventure University in Allegany, N.Y., and the Washington Theological Union. He holds degrees from Siena College, the WTU and The Catholic University of America.

Lawrence, a native of Mineola, N.Y., and a Franciscan friar for 30 years and a priest for 24, has served as a Provincial Councilor since 2011. Before being installed as pastor of Immaculate Conception in January 2013, he served at St. Camillus Parish in Silver Spring, Md., where he was pastor and guardian, and at St. Paul’s Parish in Wilmington, Del. Larry has been active in Provincial leadership roles. In 2011, he facilitated the Province’s workshop about reaching youth and young adults. In October 2012, he presented a keynote speech at the Province’s second Encuentro Franciscano celebration of Hispanic culture. Larry is a graduate of Columbia University, Harvard Law School and the WTU.

New Council
After the Provincial Minister and Vicar were installed on Thursday, members of the Provincial Council were elected for the 2014 to 2017 term. William Beaudin, OFM, Brian Belanger, OFM, and Joseph Nangle, OFM, were re-elected, having served on the Council since 2011.

David Convertino, OFM, Fred Dilger, OFM, and Robert Frazzetta, OFM, all elected for the first time, bring a diverse background of experience to the Council. David who has led the Province’s Office of Development for the past three years, has a long career in urban ministry, having directed St. Anthony Shrine in Boston and St. Francis Chapel in Providence, R.I. Fred, who was solemnly professed five years ago, is engaged in direct service with the poor at St. Francis Inn Ministries in Philadelphia. Robert has spent most of his ministry in academia as a high school teacher. He is currently training to work with and care for senior friars.

This is the first time in Provincial history that an equal number of brothers and ordained friars make up the Council. Brian, Fred and Robert are brothers and David, Joseph and William are priests.

The new Provincial administration began their work this week. The first challenge of these eight friars is to determine assignments for the members of Holy Name Province for the next three years during the post-chapter Congressus, which runs from June 10 through June 18, with a long weekend break. 

— Jocelyn Thomas is director of communications for Holy Name Province. The above photo was taken by Octavio Duran, OFM. Additional images of the chapter are available on the Facebook page of St. Anthony’s Guild.