Vocation Office Launches New Website

Maria Hayes In the Headlines


NEW YORK — In time for National Vocation Awareness Week, the Franciscan Vocation Ministry of Holy Name Province launched a new, interactive website at BeAFranciscan.org.

With large, vivid images and a clear layout, the site was designed to appeal to young adults. BeAFranciscan.org includes information from the previous “Join Us” section of HNP.org. In addition, the Be A Franciscan blog has been integrated into the website.

Visitors are given the choice of viewing the site in two languages — English and Spanish. A pop-up chat window in the lower right corner of the screen allows users to quickly ask a question and receive an answer from the vocation staff. Basil has received positive feedback about the site.

New Features
“This new website helps us to promote the upcoming ‘Come and See’ and discernment retreats,” explained director Basil Valente, OFM, who completed the project that began under former director Brian Smail, OFM. “It also highlights a variety of short videos that promote vocations to the consecrated life with the Franciscans of Holy Name Province.”

Several of those videos appear on the Be A Franciscan Facebook page, where they are easy to share across social media platforms. Friars who appear in these videos include William Beaudin, OFM, David Convertino, OFM, Daniel Dwyer, OFM, and Michael Reyes, OFM.

Men who are interested in becoming a friar are encouraged to explore BeAFranciscan.org and to get in touch with the HNP Vocation Office by filling out the Contact Us form. Those who complete the form during National Vocation Awareness Week will receive a special comprehensive “Guide to Becoming a Franciscan Friar” that details what life is like as a member of Holy Name Province.

The Be A Franciscan Facebook page is also posting a series of reflections, prayers and video for National Vocation Awareness Week.

Upcoming Events
The office has planned several upcoming events, including a Come and See Weekend from Dec. 5 to 7 at St. Anthony Shrine in Boston. As of last month, 11 people had indicated their interest in attending the event, which is designed to accommodate six people.

The office will also hold an Evening of Vocations on Jan. 12 at the University of Georgia in Athens.

Several events were held last month. They included an Asian-American Vocation Retreat at St. Francis Church in New York City coordinated by Julian Jagudilla, OFM, Stephen Mimnaugh, OFM, Ramon Razon, OFM, and Michael Reyes, OFM. Michael Carnevale, OFM, provided hospitality. David Convertino, OFM, Andrew Reitz, OFM, and Basil also participated.

“Friars and the men who attended had a very serious discussion about the vows, working, relationships, what community life means and what the consecrated life is all about,” said Basil. “After this honest, in-depth conversation, one of the men turned to me and said, ‘I would really like to be signed up for the next discernment weekend.’

“It was wonderful to see where the men were coming from and what they wanted to get out of the day,” Basil added. “This was a discussion that went far beyond the surface as the men shared what was important to them. The friars were able to bring various different components to the conversation as well.”

One of the common themes discussed at each vocation event centers around a quote from theologian Frederick Buechner:

“The place God calls you to is the place where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.”

For more information about upcoming vocation retreats, visit BeAFranciscan.org.

Maria Hayes is communications coordinator for Holy Name Province.