Ongoing Formation Opportunities

Jocelyn Thomas In the Headlines

Several programs offered this summer emphasize leadership skills useful for parish ministry and are open to clergy as well as laypeople.

In Maryland, the National Leadership Roundtable on Church Management is offering “A Toolbox for Pastoral Management” from July 13 to 18 in Baltimore. Transportation costs for friars will be paid by the Province, according toChristopher Keenan, OFM, HNP moderator of ongoing formation.

A book with a similar name — A Pastor’s Toolbox: Management Skills for Parish Leadership — published earlier this year, contains information about skills needed to meet the expectations of parishioners. According to The Beacon, the book, edited by a professor of servant leadership at Seton Hall University, South Orange, N.J., provides insights on how to be a successful priest. The chapters cover topics such as developing a comprehensive human resources program, fundraising as Christian stewardship, and pastoring and administering a mission-driven church.

In New Jersey, two sets of courses in July are part of the San Alfonso Clergy and Pastoral Summer Institute in Long Branch. The first, the Clergy Institute, will run from July 6 to 11, and the second, the Pastoral Institute, is scheduled for July 13 to 18. Classes will be led by “accomplished and renowned speakers,” according to a flyer.

Information can be found on the San Alfonso Retreat House’s website. Those who register before May 1 will pay a discounted price and participants who attend both weeks will receive complimentary weekend accommodations.

Other formation opportunities for friars — both educational and spiritual — are offered throughout the year in various geographic areas. In June, Mt. Irenaeus is offering its contemplative days at the Franciscan mountain retreat in West Clarksville, N.Y. In November, friars from all branches of the Franciscan family are invited to an interprovincial retreat on aging, in Florida.

— Compiled by Jocelyn Thomas