El Paso Faith Community Shows Its City That Faith is Something One Lives Every Day

Written by Peter Rajchert on . Posted in NA Provinces



The annual Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe is an important occasion at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Parish-Ysleta Mission in El Paso, Texas. Our Lady who appeared to St. Juan Diego on a hill in Mexico City in 1531 comforts and inspires Ysleta’s parishioners as she does faithful people across the United States and Latin America.

To honor Our Lady and to encourage El Paso’s residents to greater faith, the men and women of Ysleta processed along their city's streets. We share with you above a short video of this procession (click on the image to see it), which shows Franciscans and parishioners walking past a magnificent mural of Our Lady of Guadalupe. In the images we see the San Damiano Cross as well as members of the region’s indigenous community who are celebrating their faith and ancient culture. We notice how large the processing group is. Dozens and dozens of people walk by before our eyes, people to whom faith is something that one lives on a daily basis through acts that reflect Jesus to the world.

(Source of image: https://www.facebook.com/OLMCysletamission/videos/vb.193289537412973/1262883000453616/?type=2&theater.)


Our Lady is with Us Always

Written by Peter Rajchert on . Posted in NA Provinces

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On December 12, 2016, the Franciscan Friars Conventual in the United States celebrated the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe. The friars from Our Lady of Consolation Province in the Mid- and Southwestern United States have an excellent reflection on their website for this feast day. They point out that the words Our Lady said to St. Juan Diego in what is today Mexico City in 1531, “Am I not your mother? Am I not here?” are as true today as they were nearly half a millennium ago.

Our Lady is always present in our lives. She supports and cares for us in a profound way. We must remember that we can turn to her when we feel lost. She will intercede with God on our behalf.

The Franciscans’ Our Lady of Consolation Province is one of four jurisdictions in the United States. The others are St. Joseph of Cupertino Province (Western United States), Our Lady of the Angels Province (Eastern United States and Canada), and St. Bonaventure Province (the United States Midwest). You can learn about all four on this webpage.

(Source of image with story: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/2/2c/Virgen_de_guadalupe1.jpg.)

Handing Our World to Future Generations in a Healthy State

Written by Peter Rajchert on . Posted in NA Provinces


St. Philip Benizi parish in Jonesboro Georgia has a Green Team Ministry. Supported by pastor Franciscan Friar Conventual John Koziol the ministry works with the parish and wider community to help care for creation and to reflect Pope Francis' teaching in his Laudato si’ encyclical on humanity's impact on planet Earth. Each and every one of us can adjust the way we live to lessen our negative impact on the environment.

St. Francis of Assisi, the founder of Friar John Koziol’s Order, understood that God has given humanity the role to be caretakers of our world. We are brothers and sisters with the rest of creation and need to make sure that we pass the world onto future generations in a healthy state.

(Source image with story: https://upload.wikimedia.org/.)

Twenty Years of Priestly Life, Twenty Years of Bringing Hope to the Vulnerable

Written by Peter Rajchert on . Posted in NA Provinces



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In 1996, Franciscan Friar Masseo Gonzales became a priest. On November 26, 2016, he celebrated the 20th anniversary of his ordination to the priesthood at St. Paul Parish in San Pablo, California. His Franciscan brothers have been actively serving this faith community for years. Friar Masseo grew up in Richmond, just south of San Pablo.

Family, friends, Franciscans, as well as supporters filled the pews at St. Paul Parish for Friar Masseo’s ordination anniversary Mass and afterwards a meal in the Parish Hall. Guests  reminisced, laughed and bonded with each other. They wished Friar Masseo all the best for the future as he continues his work with El Padrecito Ministries in Guadalupe.

Masseo’s El Padrecito Ministries minister to at-risk youth through music, dance, and an Internet radio station. They broadcast hope and the power of faith to those who feel uncertain in life. Friar Masseo is a magnificent homilist and musician. He inspires young people to reach out to the Lord. He treats them with the love and respect that they deserve.

(Source of image with story: https://www.facebook.com/FatherMasseo/photos_all?lst=586357323%3A1848150636%3A1481163395.)



Growing in Our Faith Through Service to Our Vulnerable Brothers and Sisters

Written by Peter Rajchert on . Posted in NA Provinces


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The Franciscan Conventual-run Basilica of St. Josaphat in Milwaukee, Wisconsin is working with the Archdiocese of Milwaukee to encourage young people between the ages of 15 and 18 to participate in next summer’s Reach Out, Reach In volunteer program.

From July 9 to 14, 2017, young people will prepare meals for the vulnerable, support the elderly and get involved in other social campaigns that help make their community a better place to live. In their service they will grow as Catholics, understanding that serving those people whom society often leaves behind is a key part of our faith.

Friar Michael Glastetter is the rector and pastor of the Basilica of St. Josaphat. This historic parish dates back to the late 1880s and initially served Milwaukee’s Polish immigrants. The Franciscan Friars began their ministry at the parish in 1910.

(Source of image with story: https://thebasilica.org/photoalbums.)


Franciscan Friar Marks 25 Years of Priestly Life

Written by Peter Rajchert on . Posted in NA Provinces

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Friar Martin Day is the Franciscan Conventual pastor of St. Benedict Parish in Terre Haute, Indiana. He celebrates daily Mass, provides pastoral care, and generally makes himself available to his parishioners.

St. Benedict parishioners came out one recent evening to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Friar Martin’s ordination to the priesthood. Friends and family also took part in this event. It started off with a Mass during which Friar Martin preached and concluded with a meal. Friar Martin talked with many well-wishers on this occasion and thanked them for their support.

(Source of image with story: OLC Province.)