16 enter Interprovincial Postulancy in Maryland

16 enter Interprovincial Postulancy in Maryland


(Earlier this year the seven provincial ministers of the United States announced the creation of an interprovincial postulancy program. The new program, which began last month, is located at Holy Name College in Silver Spring, Md. Below, two postulants share an update on the first few weeks in the program.)

On Wednesday, Aug. 23, we were blessed to have 16 postulants enter the first interprovincial postulancy program for the Order of Friars Minor in the United States.

The names, ages, hometowns and provinces of the new postulants are:

Andrew Aldrich, 26, of Mishawaka, Ind. – Assumption BVM Province
Andrew Dinegar, 51, of New York City – St. Barbara Province
Ian Grant, 33, of Bergen County, New Jersey – Holy Name Province
Chase Lopez, 27, of Storm Lake, Iowa – Holy Name Province
Matt Lorch, 40, of Indianapolis – Holy Name Province
Raphael Ozoude, 22, of Lagos, Nigeria – St. John the Baptist Province
Daniel Mayer, 24, of Houma, La. – Sacred Heart Province
Salvador Mejia, 47, of Acambaro, Mexico – St. Barbara Province
Loren Moreno, 33, of New York City – Holy Name Province
John Neuffer, 33, of Durham, N.C. – Holy Name Province
Richard Phillip, 40, of Camden, N.J. – Holy Name Province
Carlos Portillo, 32, of San Vicente, El Salvador – Holy Name Province
Matt Ryan, 46, of Covington, Ky. – St. John the Baptist Province
Josh Tagoylo, 24, of Hayward, Calif. – St. Barbara Province
Nhan Ton, 40, of Saigon, Vietnam – Sacred Heart Province
Steven Young, 29, of Canton, Mass. – Holy Name Province

We have men from a diverse group of ages, heritages, and provinces. God is good! After orientation, we took part in an in-house compass retreat in which we opened up to each other and reflected on the directions our lives are taking. That weekend, with openness, we joined the friars at the Church of St. Francis of Assisi in New York City to witness the Aug. 26 solemn vows of Brothers Casey Cole, OFM, and Ramoncito Razon, OFM, of Holy Name Province. The solemn profession of our brothers before the Franciscan community, including our General Minister, was a poignant way to mark so many fresh beginnings.

On Aug. 31, Fr. Mark Soehner, OFM, the provincial minister of St. John the Baptist Province, was the celebrant for a welcome Mass at Holy Name College, officially marking the beginning of the first interprovincial OFM postulancy program in United States. Members of the formation team presented each postulant with a Tau cross that was handmade by novice Luis Rosado of Holy Name Province.

The Secretaries of Formation – Martin Ibarra, OFM (of St. Barbara Province), Carl Langenderfer, OFM (St. John the Baptist), Ralph Parthie, OFM (Sacred Heart), and Kim Studwell, OFM (Assumption BVM) – as well as friars from Holy Name Province including members of the Holy Name College and St. Camillus Parish friar communities – all joined in the Eucharist and ceremony. This was followed by a festive social and dinner.

The postulants look forward to a fruitful year of discernment and service.

(Matt Ryan of St. John the Baptist Province and Joshua Tagoylo of St. Barbara Province are members of the 2017-18 postulant class.)