News and Events
In This Issue
The Franciscan Spirituality Committee now has a blog! All current and previous reflections can be found there.

A new reflection has been posted! Visit the Franciscan Spirituality Page to read more. 
Allegany Franciscans Website
Like us on Facebook

Did you know that a daily reflection is posted on our Facebook page, or that it is also shared with a Portuguese translation by our Sisters in Brazil? Take a look! 
Issue 3.02
January 26, 2015

Feast of Angela Merici
(January 27)
Today we celebrate St. Angela Merici (1474-1540). At the age of 13, Angela became a member of the Third Order of St. Francis, wishing to serve and follow Christ. As her faith journey deepened Angela chose 12 young women and founded the "Company of St Ursula". She believed that all were called to live gospel life. Angela desired that her young community live their lives consecrated to God remaining in the world and live a celibate life in their own homes, thus anticipating the secular institutes that have flourished in modern times. Angela modeled in a new way Jesus' works in our gospel, "whoever does the will of God is my brother and sister and mother."
Chapter Planning for 2016 goes electronic

By: Denise Bunk-Hatch, communications director


   I am sure by now you have seen the Chapter Planning newsletter, as well as the page on the website for Chapter 2016. If you haven't seen the web page, please visit it (or look for icon shown here on the home page)!

   Both of these items are a work in progress, and will be updated as the Chapter Planning Committee moves forward.

   You may not be aware that the CPC newsletter is being sent in three languages - Portuguese, Spanish, and English. Sending the newsletter in all the languages of our congregation is a concrete step in being attentive of the intercultural reality of our congregation.

   This simultaneous email would not be possible without the hard work of those who have helped to translate the newsletter. A huge thank you is due to sisters Goianira Silva OSF and Lucy Cardet OSF, and to congregational archivist Ellen Winger.  Without their hard work, the multi-language e-newsletter would not have happened. 

   Archived copies of the CPC e-newsletter, as well as a sign up form for each of the three languages, are also available on the Chapter Planning webpage. 


St. Joseph's Hospital - South chapel blessed
Submitted by: Pat Shirley, OSF
   On Wednesday, January 14, Bishop Robert Lynch of the Diocese of St. Petersburg, FL, presided over the Dedication and Blessing of the chapel of the new St. Joseph's Hospital - South. 
   St. Joseph's Hospital was founded in Tampa, FL, in 1934. Today, it is part of the Baycare Health System, and includes St. Joseph's Hospital, St. Joseph's Children's Hospital, St. Joseph's Women's Hospital, South Florida Baptist Hospital, and St. Joseph's Hospital - North. St. Joseph's Hospital - South is the newest addition to the Baycare hospitals, and is scheduled to open in February in Riverview, FL.

   For more information on St. Joseph's Hospital - South, click here.
Circles of Conversation
By: Helen Roberts, OSF

   In an effort to live out our initiative of being Ecclesial Women and to  inspire leadership within a parish structure, we used an idea shown to us by Pat Reid OSF during an Assembly held in New Jersey. The format of "Circles of Conversation" encouraged  us to bring together our Women's Group and Men's Association, using the Joy of the Gospel Retreat by Pope Francis.
   This is a six DVD presentation which we use along with Chapter questions from the workbook provided by the community leadership. The members of the parish are a diverse group representing 23 different languages and cultures.  In order to prepare the parish for new pastoral leadership, new Pastor, new staff we are engaging groups in renewed and "new" leadership.
  The atmosphere of welcoming and engaging of members to build relationships among each other is most important as a parish priority. The two groups have plans to remain involved and to be of assistance to the new pastoral leadership.        
   We are grateful to God, and for the materials provided for this venture.                                   


Honoring Marie Cameron, FSA Associate

By: Mary Laubenthal, FSA Associate


   Marie Cameron, former member, became an FSA associate in South Jersey when the Associate program was established 25 years ago. Like other associates, she worked with and for the poor. Among many other activities, she assisted at St. Francis Inn in Philadelphia, travelled to Jamaica to work with the poor, and supported The Dwelling Place, a shelter for homeless women in New York, and our St. Elizabeth Mission Society. 

    Recently her twin sent a photo of a plaque that records a tribute paid to Marie:  the gift, made in her memory, by her nephew Michael Friedman and his wife, Adena, of the reception center of the medical services department at The Community of Hope's Conway Health and Resource Center in Washington, DC.

   The Community of Hope describes its mission in this way: "... to improve the health and quality of life for low-income, homeless and under-served families and individuals in the District of Columbia by providing health care, housing with supportive services, educational opportunities and spiritual support. We seek to serve with compassion, integrity and respect."

   Learning of the recent gift of Marie's nephew, one of the associates in South Jersey characterized this plaque and memorial as a wonderful tribute to Marie, and one perfectly in keeping with her values as a Franciscan woman. 


Questions for reflection on the Year of Consecrated Life

Submitted by: Bernadette Schuler, OSf

For Committee on Year of Consecrated Life


   As we continue our celebration of the Year of Consecrated Life, the committee invites you individually or in groups to reflect on the following excerpt from "The Apostolic Letter of Pope Francis to All Consecrated People".


"What in particular do I expect from this Year of 

grace for consecrated life?


  That the old saying will always be true:  "Where there are religious, there is joy".  We are called to know and show that God is able to fill our hearts to the brim with happiness; that we need not seek our happiness elsewhere; that the authentic fraternity found in communities increases our joy; and that our total self-giving in service to the Church, to families and young people, to the elderly and the poor, brings us life-long personal fulfillment." (Part II, Article 1)


 Reflection question:  How does my/our life and commitment bring joy to the world?


     "Fundamentally, the strength of the Church is living by the Gospel and bearing witness to out faith.  The church is the salt of the earth; she is the light of the world.  She is called to make present in society the leaven of the kingdom of God and she does this primarily by her witness of love, solidarity and of sharing with others.  I am counting on you "to wake up the world"...


            Reflection question:  How do I "wake up the world"? 

                                              How does the world  wake us up?


Share your responses by sending them to:


Consecrated Life Reflection day at Harvey Ceders, NJ


            Maris Stella Retreat Center, Harvey Cedars, LBI, is offering a "Consecrated Life: The Mysticism of Encounter" retreat day for men and women religious from 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on February 21.  In honor of the Year of Consecrated life the retreat is free to all religious.  Lunch is included.  Limited overnight accommodations are available at a reasonable cost.  Registration is required.  To register or for information, call (609) 494-2917 or email by Feb. 5.


 From the Archives

   One of the most interesting things about my job as an archivist is the chance to be a "history detective." As soon as a call for information comes in, you can find me rummaging around in the records storeroom, looking for the right puzzle pieces of information to tell a complete story. Like a savvy private eye, I also rely on a network of informants to bring me tips and bits of information. This week, I'd like to introduce you to:

The Case of the Franciscan Center

   The Franciscan Center will be celebrating its 45th anniversary this year. While conducting a routine reference interview with Sister Annie Dougherty, we discovered something troubling: my records for the history of the Franciscan Center were terribly sparse. We realized right away that if we were going to have a complete story to tell in time for the 50th anniversary, we were going to have to start building up the Archives' Franciscan Center file right away!
   Now, as an archivist and a detective, I am turning to you, my informants, to help me tell the story. Do you have material about the history of the Franciscan Center? This material could look like:

  • photos
  • newspaper clippings
  • programs
  • posters
  • video
  • audio cassettes

If you do, please consider sending it to the Archives to become part of the Franciscan Center's file! Material can be sent to: Franciscan Sisters of Allegany, attn. Archives, PO Box W, St. Bonaventure, NY, 14778. If you think you might have material and would like to discuss it, please feel free to call or email the archives for advice! With your help, we will have a fantastic story to tell!


Upcoming deadlines: 

February 4 - First edition e-newsletter
February 15 - Spring Edition Allegany Connections deadline
February 18 - Second edition e-newsletter