News Briefs About Special Ministry Activities of HNP Friars

Jocelyn Thomas In the Headlines

NEW YORK — Below are updates about some of the many activities of Holy Name friars, including their presentations, outreach and celebrations. More information can be obtained by visiting links to the parishes and organizations mentioned, by contacting the friars by phone or e-mail, and by connecting with the Communications Office.

To provide a news brief for future issues of HNP Today, e-mail communications director Jocelyn Thomas at

A letter from the newly-ordained Lawrence Anderson, OFM, appeared in the May 30 bulletin of St. Mary’s Church. It describes his first year as a part of the Pompton Lakes, N.J., community. He wrote, “The spirit of this community is unrivaled. No words can adequately describe what it was like to walk into St. Francis of Assisi Church on 31st Street last Saturday morning and see so many parishioners of St. Mary’s celebrating my ordination with me or to be greeted so warmly the next afternoon as I presided at my first Mass. It was an amazing weekend that I will never forget.” An article about the May 22 ordination of Larry and of David Phan, OFM, appears in the June 3 issue of Catholic New York, the bi-weekly publication of the Archdiocese of New York.

Martin Bednar, OFM, is ministering at several Florida parishes this summer. From June 1 through July 15, he will be at Immaculate Conception Church in Hialeah, from July 16 to 30 at San Pedro Church in Tavernier, and from July 31 to Aug. 16, Martin will again be Immaculate Conception Church. He will return to St. Anthony Friary in St. Petersburg on Aug. 17.

Louis Canino, OFM, hosted a retreat for seminarians from the Diocese of Raleigh, N.C., last week. Raleigh Bishop Michael Burbidge was part of the group visiting St. Francis Springs Prayer Center, where Louis is director, from May 30 to June 3.

The Franciscan Mission Service announced on its Facebook page last week that FMS returned missioner George Corrigan, OFM, would be contributing a series of reflections on mission to the FMS blog. The first, “Franciscan Mission in the Third Millennium,” was posted June 4. George is a parochial vicar at Sacred Heart Church in Tampa, Fla.

Octavio Duran, OFM, and Anthonian contributor Frank Maurovich received awards from the Catholic Press Association convention in New Orleans. Octavio received second and third place for two of his “Through the Franciscan Lens” features. Maurovich received first place for his article, “A New Moses” — telling the story of missionary Mariano Gagnon, OFM, and his work with the Ashaninka people of Peru — that appeared in the fall 2009 issue.

Three New Jersey friars commemorating anniversaries of ordination this month were featured in the June 3 issue of The Beacon, a publication of the Diocese of Paterson. They are the late Matthew Gaskin, OFM, and Kenan Morris, OFM, celebrating 60 years, and Leon Ristuccia, OFM, commemorating 65 years as a priest this month.

Daniel Grigassy, OFM, pastor of St. Bonaventure Parish in Paterson, was interviewed about St. Anthony recently by the Paterson Diocese for a program. It is being sent to a dozen television stations for use in the next few weeks, close to the saint’s feast on June 13.

Provincial Secretary Michael Harlan, OFM, reminds friars who are attending the June 24 jubilee celebration to RSVP to him by June 14.

On May 30, the friars of St. Anthony Shrine and Ministry Center in Boston welcomed back novices Gerald Hopeck, OFM, and Michael Reyes, OFM, who had lived at the shrine during their 2008-2009 postulant year. The two friars took one of the postulant vehicles down to Wilmington, Del., said John Maganzini, OFM. “Their visit afforded the friar community the opportunity to celebrate their first profession of vows with a special preprandium, prayer service, blessing and dinner.” John prepared the prayer service, and David Convertino, OFM, director of the shrine, welcomed Michael and Gerald “home” and led the service and blessing.

After Mt. St. Mary College received a national award for service, college president Kevin Mackin, OFM, said MSMC offers studies for psychology and human services, business and communicators, or “people making a difference for the better,” said Kevin. “Numerous faculty here involve their students in service, applying what they’re learning.” The Newburgh, N.Y., college was named to the 2009 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll earlier this month.

“Digital Natives and Franciscan Spirituality” by student friar Daniel Horan, OFM, was published in the summer 2010 issue of Spiritual Life, a publication of the Discalced Carmelite Friars of the Washington Province. Dan is currently teaching in the Department of Religious Studies at Siena College in Loudonville, N.Y., during his Franciscan internship year.

Stephen Mimnaugh, OFM, attended the June 3 lecture in Franciscans International’s “Hear it From the Experts” series. Steve helped to spread the word about the Thursday gathering through the St. Francis of Assisi NYC Facebook group. The third lecture is scheduled for July 1.

A letter from Siena College president Kevin Mullen, OFM, appears on the inside cover of the spring 2010 issue of Siena News. In it, he talks about ways that the “small school is making a big splash” and encourages readers to share stories about the Loudonville, N.Y., college. Other friars included in this issue were Kenneth Paulli, OFM, Siena’s chief of staff and executive assistant to the president, and Michael Harlan.

The summer 2010 issue of Be A Franciscan, the quarterly publication of the Franciscan Vocation Ministry, was distributed electronically to all friars on June 3 by vocation director Brian Smail, OFM. The issue is also available on the Province’s website. Hard copies will be mailed to parishes and ministry sites later this month.

A. Francis Soucy, OFM, director of Holy Name Friary in Ringwood, N.J., attended the annual convocation of the American College of Heath Care Administrators in Philadelphia last month. Francis, who has supervised the Province’s skilled nursing facility since its founding in 1989, has been associated with the college for roughly 15 years, he said. He provided the Communications Office with his thoughts about the convocation.

A reflection about Pentecost by Robert Struzynski, OFM, and Paul Kline, a member of the Franciscan Sojourners, appears on the Mt. Ireneaus website. This is one of nearly 30 reflections that have been posted on the Mt. Irenaeus site by the Franciscan Sojourners community since October 2007.

Christopher VanHaight, OFM, has been appointed the new spiritual assistant to the St. John Vianney-St. Elizabeth of Hungary SFO Fraternity in Paterson. He replaces Christian Camadella, OFM, according to an announcement from Richard Trezza, OFM, director of the office of the Secular Franciscan Spiritual Assistants.

Provincial Treasurer Dennis Wilson, OFM, has announced that approved fiscal year 2011 budgets are available online. Friars and their bookkeepers can find the budgets on the HNP Extranet.

The friars of St. Francis Friary in New York City welcomed General Vicar Fr. Michael Perry, OFM, and Fr. John Hardin, OFM, of St. Barbara Province, to a dinner on June 3. The visiting friars were in New York for a meeting of the Order’s development committee.

News for future issues of HNP Today is requested by the Wednesday before each publication date. Between newsletter issues, updates about the Province and its friars are posted on Facebook and on the home page of

— Compiled by Jocelyn Thomas