The postulants have been travelling about New York and New England to get acquainted with the professed friars and the other brothers in formation in the Province of St. Mary.
Now we are going to make our first trip outside of the Northeast to our sister province in the Midwest. It will also be the longest trip of the postulancy year.
On Friday we will be leaving Brooklyn for various destinations in the Province of St. Joseph, which is also the founding province of the Capuchin missions in the United States.
The first phase of the journey will bring us to Detroit via Cleveland. We hope to reach St. Bonaventure Monastery a few hours after nightfall on Friday. We will spend Saturday in Detroit at the Capuchin Soup Kitchen, a city institution for decades. In addition to its meal program, it operates a bakery, provides substance abuse services, and runs a chidlren's program. One of its signature ministries is the Earthworks Urban Farm, a landmark in urban agriculture. I hope to blog much more about the Capuchin Soup Kitchen while on site.
Also in Detroit is the Solanus Center, a pilgrimage site to commemorate the life of the Venerable Solanus Casey, a 20th-century Capuchin priest whose cause for sainthood is being championed by the friars. To date no Catholic male born in the United States has ever been declared a saint by the Roman Catholic Church. If Father Solanus is canonized, he will be the first. We will visit his tomb and pray that his cause will advance with success it richly merits. Of this good and great friar I also hope to blog some more.
On Sunday we will leave Detroit for Milwaukee. We will be spending the week in Wisconsin to learn more about Christian ritual, and particularly the Eucharist, from Fr. Edward Foley and Fr. Bill Cieslak.
After an overnight stay in Pennsylvania on the way back, we will return to Brooklyn on Saturday, Nov. 5.
Pray for a safe, enlightening, and joyful journey for me and the postulants and our formation director. Keep your eye on the blog, too. God, my laptop, and wireless Internet willing, you will see dispatches along the way.