Consistent with our Franciscan charism and tradition of devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary, our province has been progressing in our efforts to more fully tap into this devotion from our Kolbean heritage, through the example of St. Maximilian M. Kolbe, OFM Conv., and the continued efforts of his Militia of the Immaculata’s (M.I.) unconditional consecration to the Immaculate. With a view to promoting consecration to the Immaculate among the faithful served through the ministries of our friars of Our Lady of the Angels Province, Fr. Jobe Abbass, OFM Conv., who serves as our Province MI Assistant, has completed the fifteenth successful and rewarding stop on our Province M.I Initiative Tour of our pastoral ministries. Over the next few years, Friar Jobe will preach at the Masses to encourage the faithful to consecrate themselves to the Immaculate and to enroll in the M.I.
On the weekend of the First Sunday of Advent (November 31 – December 1, 2019), the M.I. Initiative promoting consecration to the Immaculate Conception and enrollment in the M.I. made its 15th stop at St. Philip Benizi Catholic Church in Jonesboro, GA. Friar Jobe was welcomed by the 5 friars living in community there: Fr. John Koziol, OFM Conv. (Guardian of the Friary and Pastor), Fr. Martin Breski, OFM Conv. (photo credit), Fr. Vincent Gluc, OFM Conv. (Parochial Vicar), Fr. Santo Cricchio, OFM Conv. (Assisting at the parish while serving as a Contracted Counselor on site, through the Holy Family Counseling Center of GA) and Fr. Luis Palacios Rodríguez, OFM Conv. (Parochial Vicar). With seven Masses (5 in English and 2 in Spanish) and very engaged parishioners, this is the largest parish community yet on the tour. The response to the Initiative was record-breaking with 400 new M.I. enrollments and still counting. Instead of asking so many to stand in the sanctuary for a photo, the group decided to stay in their pews and have Friar John, Deacon Greg and Friar Jobe stand in the center of them. On Monday, December 2, 2019, Friar Jobe also presented a more in depth version of his talk, along with a Q&A , in the morning and in the evening. The Morning session is available through Facebook Live.