The clamor marked
the man for judgment,
Hosanna in accolade by dearer friends,
and murmured rejection
for trickery and words too grandly spoken.
Mount Tabor telegraphed his passing,
too frightened to wave
more honorific branches.
Confessing right to die with him,
to weigh the beam he carried
and spikes the soldiers tucked
within their belts.
. . . written by our brother novice, David Domanski, OFM Cap.
for the March issue of the novitiate's Caperone
I sit under the shade of an olive tree at San Lorenzo looking out on a meadow mixed with patterns of yellow and lime colored grasses. The lack of rain has the deep greens of the past month transitioning back into the familiar golden landscape we encountered on our arrival here last July .
As the sun bakes the grasses I sense a sweet aroma brought over by the warm afternoon breeze. I hear a honeybee curiously buzzing around my foot looking for pollen anywhere it can find it. Many of the spring wildflowers have held on through the drying weather, but some are beginning to fade and lose the fullness of their color filled bloom.
So it is here in this ever transitioning and thriving ecosystem we get to encounter this year as novices.
Two Capuchin friars, Frs. Francis Sabir, OFM Cap., and Qaisar Feroz, OFM Cap., assisted the dead and the wounded after a bombing outside of a Catholic church in Lahore, Pakistan.
Our Pakistani brothers continually face threats from extremist groups as they work with the people to fight the violence and the troublesome 'blasphemy' laws which being untold convictions for the Christian population there. Here is a news account of the bombings from March 15, 2015, followed by photos sent by our brothers Francis and Qaisar.
The pictures at the end of the article are graphic. Please pray and work for peace among the men and women of the region, and support the work of our brothers with your continued knowledge and compassion for their very difficult situation. Like Francis and Qaisar, we cannot turn away our faces from the violence.
Our brother, Francisco Lopez, OFM Cap., was recently featured in John Carroll University’s magazine. Francisco is an alum of the Cleveland university which he attended while a student in the Capuchin Formation Program of Borromeo Seminary in Wickliffe, OH.
The article focused on four alumni who have pursued a vocation to Religious Life. Francisco traces his call to Capuchin life to a card he received from a friend. It was from the Seraphic Mass Association and included a prayer to St. Anthony. Francisco looked at the back of the card and heard about Capuchins for the first time. The rest is history:
One of eight children, Br. Lopez, who was born in the Dominican Republic, spent 14 years there before coming to the U.S. to live in Massachusetts. That’s where his grandmother first came years previously and where he went to high school.
“I’ve always wanted to go to a Jesuit school,” Lopez says. “My father sent me to a private school in the Dominican Republic, but it wasn’t a Catholic school.”
Fr. Charles Knoll, OFM Cap., age 88, quietly passed away on Sunday, March 8, 2015, at Vincentian Home in Pittsburgh, PA.
He was born to Francis and Mary Alice (Black) Knoll on February 14, 1927, in Chicora, PA. He was one of twelve children. Father Charles was preceded in death by his parents; a brother, Francis; and his sister, Mary Agnes Pfaff. He is survived by sisters Mary Therese Geibel of Chicora, Monica Glynn of Baltimore, OH, Rita Barnhart of Rye, NY, Bernadette Huefner of Franklin, PA, Donna Neff of Butler, PA; brothers John, Thomas and Donald, all of Chicora, and Fr. Lester Knoll, OFM Cap., a member of the formation team for the Capuchin Formation Program at Borromeo Seminary in Wickliffe, OH. In addition, his brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law, and his many nieces and nephews and their children also mourn his passing.
During the week of February 22, Mick Joyce, OFM Cap., and seven seminarians from Borromeo Seminary, and our Capuchin Formation Program there, were in Honduras for an annual mission-immersion experience. They were there to support the work of Sister María Rosa Leggol, OSF, a Honduran Franciscan Sister and to assist medical and dental professionals from Cleveland who go to mountain villages to care for the sick.
In the 1960’s Sr. Maria Rosa organized a group of homes to care for abandoned and deprived children.The project became Sociedad Amigos de los Niños. The orphans of Sociedad Amigos de los Niños en Nuevo Paraiso, engaged the men in games of soccer, in pushing the kids on swings, and in giving piggy-back rides, often beginning with the simple greeting, “Hey, Amigo.”
Our brother Pio Murat, OFM Cap., a General Councilor of the International Capuchin Order in Rome, writes about our involvement in the Middle East and Asia where our brothers live and work among many of the troubled communities which have occupied so much of our attention in recent months. In this article in the latest BICI, Br. Pio reflects on how our brothers are called by the Spirit in these times to live out their 'de facto minority' -- following our Frather Francis of Assisi's call that we be true 'friars minor' (lesser brothers).
Current events continue to document the daily drama of the Middle East. Barbarous killings in Syria and in Iraq, attacks in the Holy Land, repeated violations of human rights -- we know them all too well. Unfortunately, these hostile and cruel realities leave us powerless in their wake. Christians, among others, are easy objects of a violence that knows no end.