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Father Michael Higgins Videos of Life-Giving Union Talks Now Available

Fr. Michael Higgins, T.O.R. – Video – “The Nature of Spiritual Assistance in the Secular Franciscan Order”; Keynote Address at the Life-Giving Union – Discernment and Discussion conference, August 26-29, 2019

Fr. Higgins keynote addresses from our August, 2019 gathering are now available in video, enhanced with selected slides from his presentations.  You can also view the entire PowerPoint presentation here Our Life-Giving Union – Discernment and Discussion – August 2019.


2019-12-17T18:04:52-05:00December 8th, 2019|Categories: CNSA|0 Comments

Formation Course for National Spiritual Assistants to the OFS Ends Today in Rome

The Formation Course for National Spiritual Assistants to the OFS and YouFra ends today with a presentation by Ana Fruk, OFS, from Croatia, on Promoting YouFra.  Many will remember Ana from her YouFra days.  She is now a Presidency Councilor.  She is pictured here with Fr. Francis Dor, OFM Cap., Fr. Christopher Panagoplos, T.O.R., and Fr. Jerome Wolbert, OFM.

Over 60 Friars participated in the gathering in Rome this week, representing nearly as many countries, including Arabia, Argentina, Bosnia, Brazil, Burundi, Cameroon, Canada, Chile, the Czech Republic, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, France, Great Britain, Haiti, Hungary, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Mexico, Mozambique, Myanmar, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Paraguay, The Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Rwanda, Slovenia, Slovakia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Tanzania, Uganda, United Arab Emirates, USA, Venezuela, Zambia and Zimbabwe.


2019-11-18T16:28:00-05:00November 15th, 2019|Categories: Announcements|0 Comments

Congress of National Spiritual Assistants in Progress in Rome

CNSA USA members Fr. Christopher Panagoplos, T.O.R, and Fr. Jerome Wolbert, OFM, are in Rome this week (November 10 – 15, 2019), attending the Congress of National Spiritual Assistants to the OFS. Fr. Christopher arrived on Friday, November 8th, and enjoyed some fraternity time at the Motherhouse of the Third Order Regular, The Basilica of Saints Cosmos and Damian, (courtyard shown at left), situated in the Roman Forum. Fr. Joined T.O.R. Friars from the Philippines, Paraguay, Croatia and Brazil.

The congress, a gathering of National Spiritual Assistants to the OFS and YouFra from around the world, is being held at the Pontifical University of St. Bonaventure, commonly called the Seraphicum. The Seraphicum is the international study center of the Friars Minor Conventual in Rome.

Some of the topics and presenters at the Congress are:

  • OFS History and Identity – Fr. Pedro Zitha, OFM, (General Spiritual Assistant)
  • OFS Official Documents – Tibor Kauser, OFS, (OFS General Minister)
  • OFS Spirituality – Fr. Amando Trujillio-Cano, T.O.R., (General Minister and General Spiritual Assistant) (The full text of his presentation is available here Franciscan Spirituality .
  • Spiritual and Pastoral Assistant to the OFS-YouFra, and Formation Process in the OFS-YouFra – Fr. Francis Bongajum Dor, OFM Cap. – (General Spiritual Assistant)
  • Relevance of the Franciscan Charism for Today – Fr. Alfred Parambakathu, OFM Conv. – (General Spiritual Assistant)

Among those in attendance were some familiar faces. Tibor Kauser, our General Minister, pictured here with Fr. Alejandro Isare, T.O.R., from the Philippines, and our own Fr. Christopher, and Fr. Francis Dor, who was with us at Chapter in 2016 and 2018.

We look forward to our CNSA Friars sharing insights and inspirations from the Congress when they return, and wish them safe travels.

Greetings from our General Minister, Tibor Kauser, OFS


2019-12-03T14:37:34-05:00November 12th, 2019|Categories: CNSA|1 Comment

Welcoming Fr. Chris Shorrock, OFM Conv., to the CNSA

In late October, Jan Parker, OFS, our National Minister, received a letter from Fr. Michael Zielke, OFM Conv., Minister Provincial of the Province of St. Bonaventure, OFM Conv., appointing Fr. Chris Shorrock, OFM Conv., as the OFM Conv. representative for the Conference of National Spiritual Assistants, USA.  Fr. Chris replaces Fr. Giles Gilbert, OFM Conv., who had to step down from the CNSA due to health reasons.

Fr. Chris is a native Australian, and currently lives at St. Bonaventure Friary in Chicago, IL.  Fr. is assisting with classes to Postulants at the House of Formation, and is also an adjunct lecturer at Sacred Heart Seminary and School of Theology in Hales Corner, WI.  Fr. Chris was a member of the Conference of National Spiritual Assistants for Australia.  He holds a doctorate in Theology, and has taught at Catholic Theological College in Melbourne, Australia and the Franciscan International Study Centre, Canterbury, UK. His academic interests are Franciscan Spirituality, Church history and Mariology.

Fr. joins Fr. Christopher Panagoplos, T.O.R., Br. Alexander Escalera, OFM Cap., and Fr. Jerome Wolbert, OFM, making the USA CNSA fully representative of the four obediences of Friars.  Welcome, Fr. Chris! (more…)

2019-11-12T19:38:46-05:00November 9th, 2019|Categories: Announcements|0 Comments

National Chapter meeting underway in Corpus Christi

Bishop William Michael Mulvey prepared the way for the 2019 National Chapter meeting by celebrating  Mass at the Jesus Christ Our Peace Chapel in Corpus Christi on Tuesday, Oct. 15.

The meeting, which will continue through Saturday night at the Pax Christ Liturgical Retreat Center, will include approval of the 2020 budget, a keynote on the state of the order by National Minister Jan Parker, group discussions, presentations, a service project, and the announcement of the JPIC award.

The meetings began Tuesday as Cherryle Fruge, OFS, Minister of St. Joan of Arc Region, and Claudia Kauzlarich, OFS, National Treasurer, facilitated the orientation of the new Regional Ministers in preparation for the official opening of the Chapter on Wednesday morning, October 16th.

Each year at our National Chapter, the Regional Ministers elected since the previous Chapter, along with their mentors, assemble for an orientation session.  This year, Fruge focused on the spirituality of serving the region as minister.  She shared with us that she didn’t fully understand servant leadership until she served as Regional Minister. She told us that the experience of being Regional Minister has enhanced her spiritual life.

Fruge encouraged the new ministers with inspiration words about their role as leaders:  “A vocation to the office of service is under the mantle of divine protection, and you are given all the graces sufficient to fulfill whatever we are called to do.”  Most importantly, she said, “Don’t short change prayer”.

The new ministers and delegates were warmly welcomed in the traditional introduction of the National Executive Council and Commission Chairs at the conclusion of the orientation.  The new Ministers and the delegate are:

  • Emma Lozowski OFS – Franciscans of the Prairie Region
  • Barbara Braley OFS – Our Lady of Indiana Region
  • Steve Geldmacher OFS – Saint Clare Region
  • Joanne Lockwood OFS – Saint Kateri Tekakwitha Region
  • Marianne James OFS – Saint Maximilian Kolbe Region
  • Gene Keenan OFS – Tau Cross Region
  • Tim Taormina OFS, RVM, delegate for Hazel Martin, OFS – Queen of Peace Region
  • Dale Marzano, OFS – delegate for Lorna Miressi, OFS – Mother Cabrini Region
2019-10-20T16:16:10-04:00October 16th, 2019|Categories: National Chapter|0 Comments

Announcing New CNSA Website Pages!

Our CNSA website pages are now online!  We have moved content from the old web pages, as well as added new and expanded content, including documents and photos from the August, 2019 “Our Life-Giving Union – Discernment & Discussion” gathering in St. Louis.  Please take a look, and check back often.  New content will be added as available.


The Friars and staff of the Conference of National Spiritual Assistants

Conference of National Spiritual Assistants (CNSA)


2019-12-03T14:41:13-05:00September 25th, 2019|Categories: Announcements, CNSA|0 Comments