ELLICOTT CITY, Md. – The Franciscan Friars at St. Paul Parish in Kensington took part in a little history-making in May as their order merged two provinces, or territorial areas, into one Our Lady of the Angels Province.
The former Provinces of Immaculate Conception (founded in 1872) and St. Anthony of Padua (founded in 1906) merged into the new province during the provincial chapter (convention) of the Franciscan Friars Conventual of the eastern United States May 5-9 in Buffalo, N.Y. The chapter is held every four years,
Formally established on May 5, the territory of the new Our Lady of the Angels Province stretches from Ontario, Canada, to the eastern United States, from New England to Florida. The province also includes Costa Rica and custodies in Brazil, Great Britain and Ireland. The friars in Kensington are the only representatives of the order in the archdiocese.
Numbering more than 200 friars, Our Lady of the Angels Province will assemble again in the second session of the chapter Aug. 4-8, when the friars will chart the course of the order’s many ministries, celebrating the longevity and diversity of its Franciscan witness to the poor and marginalized in the United States. Following the exhortation of Pope Francis, the new Our Lady of the Angels Province will seek to “wake up the world” with the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
The friars serving at St. Peter in Kensington are Father Robert Schlageter, pastor; Father Raymond Borkowski and Father Timothy Lyons, parochial vicars.
Information about the new province is available from Joseph Hamilton, director of communications, at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 410-531-9200.