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The Decision by Holy Name Province (HNP)

“Praise and bless my Lord and give thanks to him and serve him with great humility.”
– St. Francis of Assisi

The Decision Made by Holy Name Province (HNP) On January 3, 20202020-01-13T11:49:34-05:00

Due to the diminishing numbers of friars, the Franciscan Friars of HNP will no longer be able to serve:

  • St. Francis Chapel – Colonie, New York (a mall ministry that is closing)
  • St. Mary of the Angels Parish – Anderson, South Carolina
  • Catholic Center at the University of Georgia – Athens, Georgia
  • St. Anthony of Padua Parish – Greenville, South Carolina
  • Parish of the Holy Name of Jesus-St. Gregory the Great – New York City
  • St. Joseph-St. Maximilian Kolbe Parish – Orlando, Florida
  • St. Francis of Assisi Parish – Raleigh, North Carolina
  • St. Paul and St. Joseph Parishes – Wilmington, Delaware
  • Assumption of Our Blessed Lady Parish – Wood-Ridge, New Jersey


Can you explain the decision process?2020-01-13T11:45:58-05:00

HNP dedicated the past two years to research and discern how many ministry locations they could realistically serve in 2020 and beyond.  HNP asked each Fraternity in Ministry (FIM), including The Catholic Community of St Francis of Assisi, to provide a Fraternal Ecology Report to HNP leadership.  HNP also visited each FIM to review these reports.  More about the decision process: Click Here

Is there a chance HNP will change this decision?2020-01-13T11:45:16-05:00

No, HNP has stated the decision is final.

If I stop giving, will they listen? Withholding your offertory contributions will not impact HNP at all. Your offertory contribution supports The Franciscan community and the mission of our parishes. 

Why is HNP withdrawing?2020-01-13T11:44:56-05:00

HNP finds it necessary to withdraw from approximately 1/3 of their ministry sites.  We understand and share your desire to understand specifically why this parish in particular was selected.  We do not currently have these specifics to share.  If we gain additional details on the decision rationale for our parish, we will share them.

Who else was affected by this HNP Fraternal Ecology Process?2020-01-13T11:44:21-05:00
Please refer to the HNP News Release.

Our Friars

At all times and seasons, in every country and place, every day and all day, we must have a true and humble faith, and keep him in our hearts, where we must love, honor, adore, serve, praise and bless, glorify and acclaim, magnify and thank, the most high supreme and eternal God.
– St Francis of Assisi

When will the Friars be leaving?2020-01-13T11:09:24-05:00

We expect the friars to be at St. Francis until an orderly transition can take place – most likely in June of 2020.

Where will the Friars go next?2020-01-13T11:08:54-05:00

The friars will not know their next assignment until their Chapter meeting in June of 2020. 

Why do the Friars have to leave?2020-01-13T11:07:55-05:00

The Franciscan charism calls the friars to live and minister as brothers in community.

From the HNP announcement:

Our fraternal life together is a central priority for us – it is the core component of who we are and profess to be. With our diminished numbers, it is impossible for us to maintain all of our current ministerial commitments while also maintaining fraternities composed of several friars living in community. And as Franciscans we are called to imitate the itinerancy of Jesus who moved throughout the towns of his native land, never settling forever in one location. Thus Francis, in his Later Rule, admonished the friars,

“Let the brothers not make anything their own, neither house, nor place, nor anything at all. [Live] as pilgrims and strangers in this world, serving the Lord in poverty and humility… ” (Later Rule,6)

How are the Friars doing?2020-01-13T11:08:04-05:00

Our Friars as just as surprised as we are. They have made many strong relationships in their time here at St. Francis and will miss this dynamic community. They are grateful for all the support you have shown and continue to show for them personally and for their mission.

What’s Next?

Life is a journey.  When we stop, things don’t go right.
– Pope Francis

How can I show my gratitude for the Friars?2020-01-13T11:23:26-05:00

Be grateful to our Friars. They need our compassion and support as they navigate what this means for them and all of us who rely on them. Please remind them of all the wonderful things they have done and be grateful we’ve had the privilege of their presence and guidance. 

Watch our webpage for opportunities during the transition process to express our gratefulness.

What can I do to help the transition process?2020-01-13T11:24:37-05:00


for Bishop, transition team, community, friars, vocations, other locations going through the process.

Join in Prayer…

Words of prayer (From a SFA parishioner):

“While sitting with the news in prayer, going back and forth between heartbroken and hopeful, remembering that the only reason I am still Catholic today is because of this church, this community, Franciscan Spirituality, the openness and love of the Friars…but I realized I was looking at this whole situation through a lens of fear. When I took a minute to look through the lens of love, I was filled with hope. The thing I heard loud and clear from God was, Don’t be afraid!

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. – Philippians 4:6-7

When I looked on with fear, all I felt was dread and sadness. When I went to God with thanksgiving for all that this community has been to me and prayed for peace in my heart about the transition I realized that God is bigger than all my fear. God is bigger than the Friars. God’s understanding is beyond our understanding and God can bring hope and peace even in the dread and sadness. God is in each and every one of us. The Franciscan Spirit/Spirituality lives in each of us. The Friars are amazing and I love them dearly and I will miss them like crazy. AND God is bigger than the loss of the Friars. The peace of God transcends all understanding. The Franciscan Spirit will live on in this community.”
– Jessica  Kelly

Stay Connected 

The transition team will create opportunities to listen and to gather feedback. Your input is wanted.  Your gifts are needed.  Your skills and talents will help.

What is the process from this point forward?2020-01-13T11:24:51-05:00

A transition team is being created in collaboration with the Diocese to facilitate the transition process.


 “We must consider the immense gifts that God has bestowed on us, especially those he has
seen fit to work in us through his beloved servant, our blessed…Francis.”
– Clare of Assisi

What is the communication process?2020-01-13T11:50:58-05:00

Transparency – we are committed to an open communication process. We will be working on the transition and learning things on a daily basis and are committed to keeping parishioners, staff, and parents updated.  However, during a time of transition, false information can circulate.

Please, if you don’t hear something directly from an official source, it’s just a rumor.

Why haven’t I received any of the email communications? What to do to ensure we have your correct information.2020-01-13T11:51:32-05:00

There are a number of possible reasons you may not have received e-mails:

Your email provided may have automatically routed the email to your junk or promotions folders, so please check there first. If, at any point, you have opted out of receiving emails from St. Anthony’s Guild, you would not have received this communication.  Please complete the Subscribe Form to resubscribe to receive emails. 

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