Siena Plans Festive Academic Convocation

HNP Communications Around the Province

LOUDONVILLE, N.Y. — Former Provincial Minister John Felice, OFM, will be honored next month at an academic convocation being held by Siena College to commemorate the 800th anniversary of the founding of the Franciscan Order and the 10th anniversary of the establishment of the Franciscan Center for Service and Advocacy (FCSA). All friars are welcome to attend.

John, an advocate for the homeless, is one of three being recognized at the Oct. 1 convocation in the Alumni Recreation Center.

Siena is awarding honorary degrees to three individuals who have made significant contributions to the community, in the spirit of St. Francis.

John Felice, co-founder and co-director of St. Francis Friends of the Poor, a non-profit organization in New York City serving the permanent housing needs of the chronic mentally ill and homeless, establsished Siena’s FCSA during his term as Provincial Minister. John, a resident of St. Francis Friary in New York,  served  from 1996 to 2005.

The other award recipients are:

• Sr. Margaret Carney, OSF, 20th president of St. Bonaventure University in Allegany, N.Y, who will serve as the keynote speaker for the convocation

• Rev. Robert Lamar, pastor emeritus (1958-1992), First Presbyterian Church, Albany, and a champion since the 1960s of various community groups and interfaith efforts in the Capital Region

The FCSA is recognized for the significant contribution it has made to the mission of Siena College by encouraging students and members of the Siena community to give of their time and talents in volunteer service to our brothers and sisters in need. Since its establishment in 1999, the Franciscan Center has partnered with more than 165 social service agencies in the Capital Region of New York state. Three friars have served as directors of the center: Michael Harlan, OFM, from 1999 to 2005; Kevin Mullen, OFM, from 2005 to 2007, and Mathias Doyle, OFM, since 2007.

The convocation begins at 11 a.m. All students and faculty will assemble at 10:30 a.m. on the Academic Quad in preparation to process to the ARC.

Friars who wish to attend the academic convocation should contact Joseph Fitzgerald in Siena’s Office of Academic Affairs by phone, 518-782-6460, or e-mail,