‘Picture Yourself in Brown’ Theme of New Vocation Brochure

Jocelyn Thomas In the Headlines

NEW YORK — The HNP Vocation Office is aiming to catch the attention of potential friar candidates with a new brochure using the title “Picture Yourself in Brown.”

The brochure, developed by vocation director Brian Smail, OFM, and Octavio Duran, OFM, is a brown pocket-sized pamphlet that shows images of friars photographed in a variety of ministries. It asks three questions:

  1. Are you looking for a vibrant community life?
  2. Are you looking for a life of prayer?
  3. Are you looking for a life of service to your brothers and sisters in need?

“The brochure draws attention to the website ‘BeAFranciscan.org’ which is prominently displayed. It includes a QR code to allow ‘smartphone’ users to scan it to connect directly to the website,” said Brian. “Another brochure specifically targeting college students is near completion.”

Copies of the “Picture Yourself in Brown” brochure were mailed to HNP ministries early last month. Brochures in Spanish were included for 14 of the ministry sites, said Carolyn Croke, Brian’s assistant.  “To save on time and postage, copies of the summer edition of Be a Franciscan newsletter were enclosed as well,” she said.

This current issue of the vocation newsletter features the spring ordination of Stephen DeWitt, OFM, and Daniel Horan, OFM, and includes articles about Patrick Tuttle, OFM, and Jeffrey Jordan, OFM.  The next issue, according to Brian, “will include a cover story about the San Damiano Cross to coincide with the feast of Francis. The focus of this piece will be how the cross, which spoke to Francis, tells a story.”

For the fall, several events for men interested in learning about Franciscan life have been scheduled. “A vocation weekend is being planned for Boston in September and for the Camden/Philly/Wilmington area,” said Brian. “We are also inviting interested men to join the friars for the Transitus at St. Francis of Assisi Church in Midtown Manhattan on Oct. 3.”

Brian said that the HNP Vocation Office recently received immigration information from the Province’s Hispanic Ministry Committee that he would like to share with Province members.

“We have been informed by CLINIC, the Catholic Legal Immigration Network, that non-U.S. citizens who hold TPS — Temporary Protective Status — may be able to have their status changed, so that they may apply for student visas,” he said. “This means that these individuals would be eligible to apply to be accepted to the postulant program in Holy Name Province. CLINIC adds that should such individuals withdraw from formation, they may have their status reverted to TPS.”

The Vocation Office team has recently broadened the content of its social media. The Be A Franciscan Facebook page now includes photo albums, with themes such as Education, Parish Ministry, Friar Celebrations and Milestones, Missions,  and Friars in Formation and often provides links to recent posts on the Vocation blog, also called Be a Franciscan.

— Jocelyn Thomas is director of communications for Holy Name Province.