A Profession at Holy Spirit Secular Franciscan Fraternity

FAIRFIELD—John Otis, OFS, a parishioner at St. Aloysius in New Canaan, was professed into the Holy Spirit Secular Franciscan Fraternity during a Mass on Saturday, July 17th, celebrated by Reverend Gene Szantyr and concelebrated by Very Reverend Robert Kinnally, Vicar General of the Diocese of Bridgeport, at St. Anthony of Padua Church in Fairfield.

Musicians for the Mass were Dr. John Michniewicz, Ms. Nancy Leville and Mr. Logan Otis. The fraternity, John’s family and friends celebrated with a lunch after the Mass. May God bless John in his vocation as a Secular Franciscan.

Prayer, study and service are charisms of the order, and Susan says, “I find Christ in service. I look at working in the parish as a privilege, an opportunity to bring what I have as a professed Secular Franciscan to the workplace.”

The Third Order is the largest in the Franciscan family with 13,000 members in the United States in 587 fraternities, 14 of which are in Connecticut and three in the Diocese of Bridgeport. The Holy Spirit Fraternity was established in 1994. The formation process requires from two to three years of prayer, study and service. There are also fraternities in Darien and Danbury.

The Holy Spirit Fraternity meets every third Saturday of the month for a 9:30 am Mass, fellowship time and a brief business meeting at St. Anthony of Padua Church, 149 South Pine Creek Road, Fairfield. Inquirers to a Secular Franciscan Order are always welcome. For more information, contact Marilyn Mitchell, OFS at


Pictured is John with the fraternity’s council members from left to right:
Patricia Heile, OFS, Councilor; Susan Lenahan, OFS, Secretary; Susan Baldwin, OFS, Director of Formation; John Otis, OFS; Marilyn Mitchell, OFS, Minister; Meg Styles, OFS, Vice Minister; and Margaret Francesconi, OFS, Treasurer.