Midwestern Provinces Discern Their Future

HNP Communications Franciscan World

CEDAR LAKE, Ind. — The provinces of St. John the Baptist and Assumption are continuing their discernment talks on the future of the two provinces. 

On Feb. 24, the Provincial Councils met here to discuss creation of a new combined province. Assumption Province is based in Franklin, Wis., and St. John the Baptist Province in Cincinnati. 

The Discernment Steering Committee, facilitated by Paul Michalenko, OFM, has established sub-committees to focus on temporalities/legal, spirituality/worship, government, communications, senior friars, and fraternal life. 

Over the next two years, the provinces will conduct house chapters, regional/cluster days, retreats, joint leadership days, a joint provincial assembly and two straw ballots. The provinces expect to decide on a plan in 2011, when the chapters meet. 

News of the discernment was reported in the March 8 edition of the Provincial Newsletter of Assumption Province.

In other news from Assumption Province:

• The province is bidding farewell to Archbishop Timothy Dolan who is leaving Milwaukee soon to begin his new ministry in New York City.

“Dolan has been a good friend of the province,” the newsletter read. “During his tenure, we have increased our presence in the archdiocese and he has been most welcoming and encouraging…He will certainly be missed by us.”

• The Summer Institute at Catholic Theological Union is offering “Inviting God to the Meeting.” It is a one-day workshop designed to improve the way friars do business in their parishes.

• Friars over 60 will join senior friars from other OFM provinces at a retreat in Winter Park, Fla., from Nov. 9 to 13. They will discuss “Growing Old Gracefully.”

• The benefits of walking were highlighted in the “Wellness Corner.”