Two 2017 Interprovincial Retreats Announced

Jocelyn Thomas Friar News


An interprovincial friar retreat focusing on change is being offered at two locations this winter, facilitated by the friars who have been leading the reconfiguration process of the OFM provinces.

The 2017 gatherings, open to members of all OFM provinces in the English-speaking Conference, are being offered at no charge to participants. They are being held at the Franciscan Renewal Center in Scottsdale, Ariz., from Jan. 9 to 13 and at San Pedro Center in Winter Park, Fla., from Feb. 6 to 10.

The retreats, titled “Change for the Sake of God’s Reign: Sources of Resistance, Resources for Renewal,” will focus on “the fundamental Gospel summons to change, to reform your lives and believe in the Good News,” according to a flyer distributed by the retreat organizer. The retreats will examine the dynamics of change through three lenses and will include presentations, faith sharing and liturgical prayer as well as time for personal reflection.

The retreat leaders are Bill Beaudin, OFM, Richard McManus, OFM, of St. Barbara Province, and Page Polk, OFM, of St. John the Baptist Province, who have served for the past two years as member of the Franciscan Interprovincial Team, facilitating the restructuring discussions.

Both gatherings, sponsored by the seven U.S. provinces, begin on Monday evening and conclude on Friday morning. The only charge to attendees is transportation to the retreat site. Attendees are asked to register by Dec. 19 by contacting Br. Bruce Michalek, OFM, by email or fax.

“We are holding the retreat in two venues as a way to encourage as many friars as possible to come and meet their brothers from all over the United States,” said Br. Bruce, who is organizing the gatherings. “The biggest takeaway from the recent FIT meetings – the interprovincial gatherings held this summer – was the interest in having opportunities to meet fellow friars and to discover similarities.

“We are getting a good response from all the provinces,” he added. “Right now, we’re at 50 percent capacity for both events. Registration is easy since no payment needs to be made.”

In January, friars from around the country participated in an interprovincial retreat in New Mexico. Next month, an interprovincial Hispanic Ministry Retreat is being held.

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

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