News Briefs About Special Activities of HNP Friars

Jocelyn Thomas Friar News

Below are updates about some of the many activities of Holy Name friars, including their celebrations, presentations and ministry events. More information can be obtained by visiting links to the parishes and organizations mentioned, by contacting the friars by phone or email, and by connecting with the Communications Office.

To provide news briefs for future issues of HNP Today, email information to communications director Jocelyn Thomas.

John Alderson, OFM, celebrated the Jan. 19 memorial Mass held at Bishop Timon-St. Jude High School in Buffalo, where he is chaplain. The liturgy remembered the 28 alumni who died in 2012. More than 100 family and friends of the deceased alumni attended the Mass. “In true Franciscan hospitality, there was a dinner following Mass,” according to staff member Kevin McLaughlin.

The book The Wandering Friar by John Anglin, OFM, a member of the Province’s Ministry of the Word, will be released soon. “The publisher has designed a wonderful website through which it can be pre-ordered,” said John, who is stationed in St. Petersburg, Fla. “Among other things, I think that it would be a good companion book for people in RCIA programs,” John added. The book will be published in both paperback and e-book form, according to a story published last summer in HNP Today. Part 1 of his book describes how John became not only a friar, but a wandering friar who enjoys the life of an itinerant preacher. Part 2, he said, is about the Church.

David Convertino, OFM, HNP’s executive director of development, was interviewed yesterday by SiriusXM Radio’s Catholic channel about the Text a Prayer Request initiative launched earlier this month. On Jan. 21, he distributed an e-message about the prayer intention project, describing how to text the word ‘prayer’ to 30644 from a mobile phone.

Provincial Councilors Thomas Conway, OFM, F. Edward Coughlin, OFM, and Joseph Nangle, OFM, posed for a photo last week with Provincial Minister John O’Connor, OFM,  Provincial Vicar Dominic Monti, OFM, and two Provincial Office staff members to commemorate the 4th annual Bona Pride Day when they were in New York City for a meeting. Thomas is a member of the SBU Board of Trustees, Edward is SBU’s vice president for Franciscan mission, Joseph is an alumnus, John is a former director of campus ministry, and Dominic, also an alumnus, is a former president of the university in Western New York. The photo was posted on the St. Bonaventure Alumni Facebook page on Jan. 25.

Julian Davies, OFM, asks that friars and directors of HNP ministries submit stories and photos for the next edition of The Provincial Annals by May 1. “If you had a jubilee or something special, be sure to write that up. Photos are welcome in high resolution 300 dpi.”

A photo of Robert Frazzetta, OFM, and Richard McFeely, OFM, of Butler, N.J., appeared in the Jan. 24 issue of Catholic New York with a story titled “You Can Now Text a Friar Your Prayer Intention.”

Thomas Gallagher, OFM, pastor of St. Patrick-St. Anthony Parish, Hartford, Conn., provided an update through a Jan. 24 e-letter on the health of Andrew Giardino, OFM, who suffered a stroke the day before. “As I am sure you know, this is his second stroke in less than a year and it is important that he get the rest he needs. I thank you for your prayers and concern. You are a great source of strength for him and for the friars. He has begun physical and speech therapy, which are exhausting for him. I ask your prayers for him but that we limit visits so he can recover. Cards and notes may be sent to the office and will be brought to Andrew. I expect he will be in the hospital for a little longer and then moved into a rehabilitation facility until he is ready to come home.”

Provincial Secretary Michael Harlan, OFM, has distributed on behalf of the Provincial Council the dates of the Province’s spring fraternal  gatherings, a series that begins April 2 in Wappingers Falls, N.Y., and ends June 4 in Skaneateles, N.Y. The registration deadline for these gatherings, an essential part of the preparation for the 2014 Provincial Chapter, is Feb. 15. Recently, Michael and his staff also distributed the 2013 HNP Memorial Days of Deceased Friars booklet.

On Sunday in Hartford, Cidouane Joseph, OFM, marked the feast of St. Genevieve by celebrating a Mass to honor St. Patrick-St. Anthony’s relationship with its sister parish, St. Genevieve of Zorange in Haiti. Photos of the commemoration were posted on the parish’s Facebook page.

Erick Lopez, OFM, and Jacek Orzechowski, OFM, of St. Camillus Parish, Silver Spring, Md., talked last week with Maryland’s  Governor Martin O’Malley at a news conference on wind energy. A photo taken of the friars on Jan. 22 appeared on the website of WBAL 1090 a.m. which posted a report titled “O’Malley: New Wind Energy Bill Can Pass Lawmakers.”

Kevin Mackin, OFM, announced this month that the third annual Thomas Aquinas Philosophy Workshop, “Free Will and Moral Virtue,” will take place from June 13 to 16 at Mount St. Mary College, Newburgh, N.Y., where he is president. Sponsored by the Mount’s Catholic and Dominican Institute and the Thomistic Institute of the Dominican House of Studies in Washington, D.C., the workshop will explore the nature of human freedom according to St. Thomas Aquinas of the 13th century. “Scholars will discern whether his analysis is defensible today, and help us to understand the ethical character of human actions and the virtues and vices that constitute moral life,” according to a Jan. 16 article from the Rockland County Times.

Last week, David McBriar, OFM, led a meeting of the HNP’s Franciscan Life in Mission Directorate. The focus of the Jan. 23 discussion was planning the Province’s upcoming series of spring fraternal gatherings.

Charles Miller, OFM, is leading a Lent Morning of Prayer on March 2 at the Church of St. Francis of Assisi in New York City. Information about the “Praying for the Dark Side” program can be found in a pamphlet about the parish’s spring 2013 Adult Education schedule. More information about the parish’s spring adult education classes — taught by Charles and Robert Gavin, OFM, among others — can be obtained by calling Kevin Tortorelli, OFM,director of the adult education center, at (212) 736-8500 ext. 311.

Provincial Vicar Dominic Monti, OFM, celebrated a memorial Mass on Sunday for Reginald Redlon, OFM, a former St. Bonaventure University president, who died in November. The Mass was offered on the SBU campus during homecoming weekend. Dominic served as president of the university from 2003 to 2004.

A letter from Provincial Minister John O’Connor, OFM, about the importance of justice for immigrants was mailed to friars on Jan. 22. He urged friars to participate in a recent electronic postcard campaign offered by the U. S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and to locate information from the website This week, John is in the Carolinas, where he is paying a fraternal visit to the friars in the region, visiting parishes and preaching at a Catholic Schools Week celebration.

Robert Sandoz, OFM, has announced the hiring of a vice president for Cristo Rey work study at Christ the King Prep School, Newark, N.J., where he is president. The Jan. 16 Christ the King e-letter announced the arrival of Anthony Caldwell, saying “how blessed we are to have a man of such extraordinary experience and background to carry us forward in this vital part of our school’s mission.”

This week, vocation director Brian Smail, OFM, is visiting Clemson and Furman universities in South Carolina to discuss Franciscan life and ministry with members of Catholic student groups there. On the weekend of Feb. 1, he will be participating in a meeting in Tampa, Fla., about an initiative of the Franciscan Sisters of Allegany, N.Y., one of four that developed out of the community’s general chapter last year. The group members are meeting with a facilitator to discuss Franciscan spirituality as a way of ministering with young adults and promoting vocations.

News for the next issue of HNP Today is requested by Feb. 6, always the Wednesday before the newsletter’s publication date. Updates about the friars and their ministries can be found on Facebook and Twitter.

Topics planned for future issues of this newsletter include:
•   A report on the 2013 March for Life
•   An article about the 50th anniversary of the Good Word telephone service
•   Profiles of this year’s jubilarians, including Bernard Creighton, OFM, John Felice, OFM, and Richard James, OFM
•   Essays by lay staff members about the Franciscan influences in their lives

— Compiled by Jocelyn Thomas