Our Visit to the friars in Washington, DC
The Capuchin candidates of the Capuchin Formation Program at Borromeo Seminary participated in the March for Life on January 27, 2017, with their Capuchin brothers in Washington D.C. Sam Hadjis, Kristhian Guillen, and Pablo Lopez served as acolytes at the Capuchin Mass for Life in the Crypt Church of the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception which took place before the march. Fr. Tom Betz, OFM Cap., Provincial Minister, celebrated the Mass.
We visited the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington D.C. With over 70 chapels and oratories dedicated to Mary, the National Shrine is a special place for pilgrimage and worship for Catholics around the world. The shrine is within walking distance from Capuchin College, our friary dedicated to post-novitiate formation (L-R: Samuel Hadjis, Kristhian Guillen, Andrew Morken, Fr. Lester Knoll, OFM Cap., Ryan Schmeltzer and Pablo Lopez).
During our stay in Washington, we had the chance to visit the friars at St. Ambrose Parish in Baltimore, MD, for Mass and fraternity. (left, L-R: Pablo Lopez, Andrew Morken, pastor Paul Zaborowski, OFM Cap., Kristhian Guillen, Samuel Hadjis and Ryan Schmeltzer).
Capuchin candidate Andrew Morken (right) poses with a relic of Padre Pio, his favorite saint, while visiting Capuchin College. Padre Pio is one of the most recent Capuchin saints (d. 1968), known for his compassion in the ministry of the Sacrament of Reconciliation and for founding Italy's largest hospital, "House for the Relief of Suffering." Pio was privileged to be united with Christ's suffering through the wounds he bore in his hands (the "stigmata").
College Life at Borromeo
Spirituality weekends are an integral part of the Capuchin candidates' formation. These weekends allow the men to enter into contemplation and adore God's beauty through nature. "Alverno" (left) is situated on the Pennsylvania-Maryland border and has been a Capuchin home for prayer and retreat for nearly a century. The majestic landscape of mountains and forest draw one's heart and mind to God, making it what one friar calls "a thin place" between the natural and supernatural. (L-R: Kristhian Guillen, Fr. Lester Knoll, OFM Cap., Samuel Hadjis, Ryan Schmeltzer, Andrew Morken and Pablo Lopez)
Throughout the course of the semester, Capuchin candidates and diocesan seminarians prayed the rosary outside of abortion clinics in Cleveland, OH. Franciscan spirituality is deeply rooted in care for the least and most forgotten (right). All of creation is precious in the eyes of God, especially our brothers and sisters whose lives are too small to be noticed.
Several Capuchin candidates were privileged to join the Cleveland diocesan seminarians in a soccer tournament at the Pontifical College Josephinum in Columbus, Ohio. Seminaries from across the Midwest came together for a weekend of competition and fellowship with one another. On the far right of the shot are CFP's Andrew Morken, Samuel Hadjis and Pablo Lopez.
Throughout the year, the Capuchin Friars and candidates at Borromeo's CFP invite other men discerning God's call to visit the seminary. These "Come and See" weekends allow them to get a feel for out life. These weekends provide young men with an awesome opportunity to ask questions, to meet the seminarians and friars, to pray with the community and to spend time with like-minded men who want to follow the Lord.
There's a weekend coming up on March 17-19.
Why not Come and See?