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.

Brian Belanger, OFM, has been named a recipient of Siena College’s Jim Knust Excellence in Administration Award. An email that was distributed last month to the Siena community stated, “Many thanks to all who submitted nominations for the Jim Knust Excellence in Administration Award. We are pleased to announce that Br. Brian Belanger, director of international programs, and Ed Travis, assistant director for services, have been selected as this year’s recipients. Br. Brian and Ed will be recognized at the faculty/administrator dinner later this spring.”

Louis Canino, OFM, is preparing for the dedication of a new chapel on the grounds of St. Francis Springs Prayer Center, Stoneville, N.C., where he is director. Roughly 200 people are expected to attend the April 14 event.

David Convertino, OFM, HNP’s executive director of development, distributed an Easter greeting last month as part of his series of seasonal emails to friends of the Province. In it, he talks of Mychal Judge, OFM, a New York City Fire Department chaplain who died during the 9/11 attack on the World Trade Center. One of Mychal’s favorite poems was “The Old Violin.” “Fr. Mychal touched the lives of so many in his ministry and life, just like the ‘touch of the Master’s hand’ is illustrated so well in his loved poem,” said David.

John C. Coughlin, OFM, and Kevin Kriso, OFM, contributed articles to the spring 2013 issue of the Mt. Irenaeus newsletter. In a piece titled “Community 101,” John wrote about his involvement with student groups. Kevin explained the assorted programs offered by the Franciscan mountain retreat. He noted the fact that half of the friars’ outreach takes place at the Mountain and the balance is spent “going out to where the people are.”

David Haack, OFM, a visual arts professor at St. Bonaventure University, Allegany, N.Y., joined members of the school community at the opening last month of the senior art exhibition and spring art show on campus. A photo of David and several students was posted on the Province’s Facebook page.

Provincial Secretary Michael Harlan, OFM, is working with the HNP Communications Office to produce the invitation for this year’s Jubilee celebration. The invitations will be mailed later this month to the 11 jubilarians.

A new book by Kenneth Himes, OFM, of Boston, was released April 1. “Christianity and the Political Order is a “compelling and comprehensive book” that “argues that politics and religion are matters too important to be left to politicians and religious leaders,” according to the book’s description on

Stephen Kluge, OFM, pastor of St. Francis of Assisi Parish in Brant Beach, N.J., reports that Sr. Kate Murphy, OSF, has moved to the motherhouse of her community, the Franciscan Sisters of Allegany, N.Y., in Western New York. A letter from the beloved sister, who had served the Long Beach Island community for 19 years, was posted on the parish’s Facebook page.

Erick Lopez, OFM, of St. Camillus Friary, Silver Spring, Md., and Christopher Posch, OFM, of St. Paul’s Friary Wilmington, Del., were among the participants at today’s immigration reform rally in Washington, D.C.

Provincial Vicar Dominic Monti, OFM, is at this week’s HNP Fraternal Gathering in Stoneville, N.C., the second in the spring series. This weekend, he will participate in a meeting  in Chicago of the interprovincial commission that is studying the restructuring of the English-speaking Conference provinces in the United States.

Siena College president Kevin Mullen, OFM, is traveling to California this week for an alumni event in Santa Rosa on April 13. Information about the event was distributed last month by the Loudonville, N.Y., college in an e-newsletter from the development and external affairs department.

Joseph Nangle, OFM, of Washington, D.C., joined a group of rabbis, ministers and priests to speak out against President Barack Obama’s use of drone warfare. In a video released during Holy Week, the group states that drones do not follow Just War Theory, which includes criteria that legitimize war, including ensuring that war is a last resort and is carried out with the right intentions. “How can we hold our heads high when remote-controlled, killer aircraft like drones are raining death and destruction on populations half a world away from our borders, on women, men, and children who pose no threat to our safety and well-being?” Joseph said in the video, which was shared by news outlets such as the Huffington Post and CNN.

Provincial Minister John O’Connor, OFM, is in Malta this week at the spring meeting of the English-speaking Conference. His commitments for April and May, subject to change, are available online.

Daniel Riley, OFM, encourages friars to consider registering for the June 24 to 28 Contemplative Days at Mt. Irenaeus. The theme of this year’s gathering will be “Hearts Listening to the Sign of the Times: Living Franciscan Contemplative Life Today.” An e-bulletin with a letter from Daniel about the Contemplative Days was distributed to HNP friars on March 15.

Joseph Rozansky, OFM, director of the OFM Office for Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation in Rome, and his colleague, Br. Fabio L’Amour, OFM, have asked that friars review the reports of the recent JPIC International Council meetings. A recent email asked JPIC animators to do several things: read the documents, considering what has been done in the Province to implement the proposals; share the Nairobi document; and send written reflections to Joseph and Br. Fabio at the Rome office using the email

Robert Sandoz, OFM, was part of the Feb. 27 reception that launched the leadership advisory council of Christ the King Prep School in Newark, where he is president. An April 4 e-newsletter, which included photos of the event, said that “as a member of the Cristo Rey Network, the school is encouraged to create a LAC to support and advance the mission of the school. These councils add a critical layer of volunteer support.”

An article about health challenges experienced by C. Raymond Selker, OFM, of St. Anthony Shrine, Boston, was published last week on the website of WCVB, the ABC affiliate. Titled “Saving the Aging Voice,” the article described a procedure Raymond underwent to strengthen his voice.

Patrick Sieber, OFM, was among 40 people who gathered at Lockheed Martin in Pennsylvania for the Brandywine Peace Community’s annual Good Friday peace demonstration and service. Modeled on the traditional Stations of the Cross, the day included readings, poetry, recordings of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., and music paralleling Jesus’ last steps and crucifixion with the suffering of humanity through war, social injustice, and the violation of the earth. There were signs of hope and expressions of radical peacemaking — for the 35th consecutive year, people faced arrest for nonviolent resistance to “the criminal authority of Lockheed Martin,” the world’s largest war profiteer, according to an article on the Brandywine peace website. The emphasis at this year’s demonstration focused on bringing the humanity of the victims of U.S. drone strikes to one of the largest corporations profiting from drone weapons technology and use. Patrick, who lives at Juniper Friary in Philadelphia, was among 11 people who were arrested and cited for disorderly conduct, and released from the police station. He shared a picture on the Province’s Facebook page of himself and protestor Annie Geers, 93, getting arrested.

Vocation director Brian Smail, OFM, is holding a Come and See Weekend May 18 to 19 at Holy Name College in Silver Spring, Md. Information about the event for men considering life as a Franciscan friar can be found on the website of the HNP Vocation Ministry.

Robert Struzynski, OFM, is speaking on “The Christian Tradition of Contemplative Prayer” at the second in a series of four programs on meditation traditions being offered at St. Bonaventure University in Allegany, N.Y. His presentation is April 15.

Patrick Tuttle, OFM, pastor of St. Anthony of Padua Parish in Greenville, S.C., was interviewed recently for an article on the growth of Catholic churches in upstate South Carolina. The video accompanying the article, which primarily focuses on St. Anthony of Padua, includes an interview with Patrick. A post about the story on the Facebook page of the Franciscan Friars of Holy Name Province generated several comments including one that said: “If you know Fr. Pat, then you would be willing to drive miles out of your way to hear his preaching! He is a great example of why we love our friars on the East and West coast.”

News for the next issue of HNP Today is requested by April 17 (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:
•   Farewell events honoring Paul Williams, OFM
•   Earth Day commemorations
•   Franciscan Mission Service’s celebration
•   Dedication of new St. Anthony of Padua School building in Greenville, S.C.

— Compiled by Jocelyn Thomas