Minister’s Message

Renewal-What Does It Mean To Us?

The theme for this edition of the TAU-USA is “Renewal.” What comes to mind? A day of rest? Something one does for a magazine subscription or a driver’s or professional license? What happens when we do not renew something? We may become burned out or exhausted in terms of our mind, or we may need to pay extra or pay a fine in terms of a license, or perhaps we might not be able to practice our profession/work. How about a renewal of our commitment to the Gospel? ...

2024-04-13T16:21:17-04:00April 15th, 2024|Categories: From the Newsletter, Minister’s Message|2 Comments

Building Relationships with the help of Jesus

Relationships is the third aspect of our national focus for 2022-2025.  The Gospel and our Rule call us to be in relationship.  "For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them." Matt 18:20 NAB Reflecting on Jesus' reminder from Matthew 18:20 - if two or three are gathered in his name, then He is there, we recognize that relationships with our Franciscan family members are especially important.

2023-12-11T17:26:49-05:00December 11th, 2023|Categories: From the Newsletter, Minister’s Message|2 Comments

Good Communication As Part of Our Communications Plan

As Catholics and Secular Franciscans, we are called to shape society and our Order's future. We are called to be good communicators and users of the means of communication available to us. When we hear the word “communication,” the first thing that probably comes to mind is media, that is, forms of communication with an “s.” ... All the communications (media) in the world go to waste if we do not communicate who we are to others and seek to understand who they are.

2023-08-01T21:51:06-04:00May 29th, 2023|Categories: From the Newsletter, Minister’s Message|1 Comment

National Minister’s Message

Have you heard the adage: “If everything is a priority, then nothing is a priority?” Of course, we don’t profess to live one article of the Rule at a time. But like the liturgical seasons, or the feast days, it does help to focus on one facet to deepen our understanding of it. We focus on one aspect while still applying the other aspects of our faith and Rule each day. ...

2023-03-05T16:25:15-05:00March 6th, 2023|Categories: From the Newsletter, Minister’s Message|3 Comments


It’s October 15, 2022, about 1:45pm Eastern time, and I have been elected National Minister of the Secular Franciscan Order in the United States (OFS-USA) by a majority vote of the members of the OFS-USA Fraternity Council at our Chapter in Detroit, Michigan. ... I have been integrating my first vocation (marriage to Brian Bamman – 32 years) with my second vocation (OFS – 27 years) for most of our married life. My husband is a “Fourth Order” Franciscan. Service as the National Secretary was a privilege and honor, but also took up quite a bit of time, so I was ready for a break. Brian and I prayed about it and discerned that it was ok to take my name off  the nominations list. What a relief! ...

2022-12-18T15:26:51-05:00December 19th, 2022|Categories: From the Newsletter, Minister’s Message|1 Comment

Franciscan Jubilee – Minister’s Message Summer 2022

I will never forget my 50th birthday. My daughter, aware of the significance of this 50-year mark, made a sign that she hung on my mailbox. It simply said, “It’s Jan’s Jubilee!” I still have that sign. It now hangs on a wall in my garage as an important reminder to always turn to God, where I find joy and peace beyond all I could ask or imagine. It was not my idea that the theme of the 2022 Quinquennial Congress would be “Jubilee,” but when Br. Bob Brady, OFM, suggested it, I was thrilled. ...

2022-08-15T08:48:57-04:00August 15th, 2022|Categories: From the Newsletter, Minister’s Message|2 Comments

State of the Order Spring 2022, National Minister, Jan Parker, OFS

A little over a year ago, my daughter and I stopped at the “Little Church”, one of my favorite places of prayer. We prayed together before heading to the hospital for my surgery that day. It’s been quite a year since then, with many months of chemo. ... I reflect on all this because I am far from alone in having had to face trials this past year. As I prepared for this talk, it occurred to me that the State of our Order depends to a great deal on the state of each of us. We have all been through a lot. Health issues, isolation, job losses, and drastic changes in our lives, not to mention natural disasters, political divides, and social unrest. ... This pandemic has affected each of us, and it has affected our Order as well. ... So, what do we do when fears and worries surround us? We continue to pray. And we listen for God’s voice. [...]

2022-09-30T08:03:54-04:00June 27th, 2022|Categories: From the Newsletter, Minister’s Message|0 Comments
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