Martin and Greg

Hendersonville’s Grace Lutheran and Immaculate Conception Catholic churches plan to work together in the future in a spirit of unity that leaders say better reflects the true spirit of Christianity.

“Our ministry is stronger if we focus more on what we have in common,” Grace Lutheran Senior Pastor Greg Williams said. “Christ’s prayer was for all followers to be one.”

Williams and Capuchin Father Martin Schratz at Immaculate Conception on May 12 signed a covenant that attempts to unify the two churches by identifying areas where they plan to work together.

The covenant calls for the two churches to pray together for Christian unity, educate groups in their churches about beliefs they have in common, celebrate joint observances, including at Thanksgiving and Christian unity services, share scripture study and work together to oppose injustices and alleviate suffering in the local community.

Williams said the two churches might also have festivals and events that overlap or possible pulpit exchanges in the future.

“Maybe there will be other things we try together,” he said.

Schratz said he was looking forward to having potluck dinners with the two congregations and a joint service in October. Youth groups from the two churches might also come together from time to time, he said.

While significant differences continue to separate the two denominations, Williams said he hopes the move toward unity with Immaculate Conception will help members from both congregations remember that all Christians believe in the same God and should work together.

The local covenant took a few elements from a longer, statewide covenant signed in 1991 by the Catholic diocese of Charlotte and Raleigh and the North Carolina Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America. That covenant was reaffirmed in 2007, according to a joint news release from the two churches.

Brother MarkBrother Mark Schenk, O.F.M.Cap., a member of the General Council in Rome will be visiting with the friars of the Province in the coming weeks.  Brother Mark will be with us for our Chapter of Mats April 17 to 22.  From there he will move down south to visit with the friars in NC and then on throughtout the province.  We welcome him warmly to our Province of the Sacred Stigmata of St. Francis.  


Pio and Leopold

On February 9, 2016 Pope Francis will celebrate Holy Mass in St. Peter's with and for us Capuchins. Many Friars will be present for this Mass including two from our Province: Fr. Vincent Fortunato and Fr. Francisco Arredondo.

As our Minister General said, "I imagine all of you already know, Pope Francis has called an Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy. This choice comes from the awareness that "the Church is commissioned to announce the mercy of God, the beating heart of the Gospel, which in its own way must penetrate the heart and mind of every person. [...] It is absolutely essential for the Church and for the credibility of her message that she herself live and testify to mercy. Her language and her gestures must transmit mercy, so as to touch the hearts of all people and inspire them once more to find the road that leads to the Father." (Bull of Indiction, 12) The Holy Year will begin on December 8, 2015, the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception and will conclude with the liturgical solemnity of Christ the King on November 20, 2016.

The friars in the Province are making preparations for the upcoming Chapter of Mats which will take place at St. Lawrence Friary in Beacon, NY.  The Chapter of Mats will run from Sunday, April 17 to Friday, April 22.  Please keeps our Province in prayer both during this time of preparation as well as during that week.  The Chapter of Mats is the term for a meeting of all the friars and consists of prayer, fraternity, addresses by various groups and a few guest speakers.  This particular Chapter will focus on Prayer and Fraternity.

Sister Death came to welcome our brother, Fr. Alfonse, on Monday, January 18.

Wake and Funeral Arrangements for Fr. Alfonse Pagliara, O.F.M. Cap.

The following are the wake and funeral arrangements for our brother, Alfonse:

Reception of the Body
Monday, January 25
11:00 am
St. Lawrence Friary Chapel
Beacon, NY

Monday, January 25
2:00 pm - 5:00 pm & 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
St. Lawrence Friary Chapel

Vigil Prayer Service - 8:30 pm

Mass of Christian Burial
Tuesday, January 26
11:00 am
St. Lawrence Friary Chapel

St. Lawrence Cemetery
Beacon, NY


fr. Roberto G general

Today, September 3, at our International College 'San Lorenzo da Brindisi', the General Chapter of the Capuchin friars elected as General Minister of the Order Br. Roberto Genuin from the Province of Venice. The term of the election is six years.

General Council 2018

The new Minister General with his Council