Capuchin Franciscan Friars


Find out about the Capuchins

The Capuchins are a branch of the Franciscan Order founded by St. Francis about 800 years ago. We are "friars", a word that means "brothers" – for we try to live as brothers to one another and to everyone, following the example of St. Francis.

News of the World

  • Capuchin Day Centre Update
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    The Capuchin Day Centre is located in Bow Street, Dublin. It serves breakfasts and hot lunches each day and hands out food parcels of basic groceries, once a week, on Wednesday mornings.

    Running costs for the centre are increasing and stand at about €1.3 million a year at present. A grant of €450,000 comes from the HSE annually, with the rest raised though fundraising.

    According to Br Kevin Crowley, who runs the Day Centre, the number of people in need has risen dramatically over the past months. "In mid-August 2013, the numbers passed 1,000 for the first time, up on the regular 300 or 400. The latest record for a single day was 1,582 people queuing just to receive parcels."
    Many of the people who are now coming for assistance are not homeless or jobless, but simply people struggling to keep their homes and their families amid ever-increasing financial pressures.
  • Voice from Ngaoundaye (Central African Republic)

    To display the subtitles in your language - press PLAY and then the fourth button from the right at the bottom

  • Update from Iraq
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    On 25 December 2013, a bomb exploded outside St John's Catholic church in the Dora area of Baghdad, killing 24. Earlier, a blast at an outdoor market in the mainly Christian al-Athorien district, killed 11 more people.Iraq's ancient Christian community has more than halved in recent years, from an estimated population of 900,000.No-one has yet admitted carrying out the attacks, which came as Christmas Day services were held across Iraq.Churches have been targeted across the country since the fall of Saddam Hussein in 2003.

    Father Ragheed Aziz Ganni, the pastor of the Chaldean Church of the Holy Spirit in Mosul was killed on 3 June 2007 in Mosul, Iraq alongside the subdeacons Basman Yousef Daud, Wahid Hanna Isho, and Gassan Isam Bidawed, after he celebrated Mass.
    Chaldean Archbishop
    Paulos Faraj Rahho and three companions were abducted on 29 February 2008, Mosul, Iraq, and murdered a few days later.

    An attack by gunmen in 2010 on the Catholic Cathedral in Baghdad left more than 50 people dead.

  • Update from Syria
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    Four Capuchin friars are working in violence-torn Syria, two in Deir Ezzor in the northwest and two in As Suwayda in the southeast, in a place called the Mountain of the Druze”. The friars report that the situation is worsening and there is a growing fear among the Christians about the future. In April 2013, the Church in Deir Ezzor was bombed.


    Melkite Greek Catholic Patriarch Gregorios III Laham recently said more than 1,000 Christians had been killed, "entire villages… cleared of their Christian inhabitants", and more than 40 churches and Christian centres damaged or destroyed. It is also reported that over 600,000 have fled the country. Many still remain in Syria where they are at risk of abduction and acts of violence, and struggling with the same hardships as the rest of the population.

  • From the Office for Justice, Peace and Ecology
  • Pastoral Workers Murdered in 2013
    According to the Fides agency, 22 pastoral workers were killed last year, up from 13 in 2012.
    Overall, those killed were 19 priests, one religious sister and two lay persons.
    Fides pointed out that to the figures must be added Fr Eric Freed of Eureka, California, who died on the evening of December 31, but whose body was not discovered until the morning of January 1.


    • In Colombia Don José Francisco Vélez Echeverri, Don José Ancizar Mejia Palomino, Don Luis Bernardo Echeverri e Don Héctor Fabio Cabrera were killed in their home, most likely due to an attempted robbery. Don Luis Alfredo Suárez Salazar was killed during gunfire. The lifeless bodies of Don José Antonio Bayona Valle and of Don Néstor Darío Buendía Martínez, who had been missing for days were found in an isolated area.

    • In Mexico Don José Flores Preciado was killed after being beaten by unknown persons, who had been discovered by the priest while they were committing theft in church where the priest celebrated Mass; Don Ignacio Cortez Alvarez, Don Hipólito Villalobos Lima and Don Nicolás De la Cruz Martínez were killed in their home.

    • In Brazil Father Elvis Marcelino De Lima was killed by two young boys during a robbery

    • In Venezuela Don José Ramón Mendoza was killed while he was in his car by a gang of bandits.

    • In Panama Don Anibal Gomez was killed most likely during a robbery, as the priest had bruises, had been tied, and he died because of a large stab wound.

    • In Haiti Fr Richard E. Joyal was killed while he was leaving a bank by two men on a motorbike.


    • In Tanzania Don Evarist Mushi was shot to death by a person on a motorbike while he was going to celebrate mass.

    • In Madagascar Sister Marie Emmanuel Helesbeux was killed. She was first hit with a stick and then strangled by three people; it seems they owed the victim money.

    • In Nigeria a lay missionary, Afra Martinelli, was found in her room, severely wounded in the neck with a machete, most likely due to an attempted theft.


    • In India Don Kochupuryil J. Thomas was killed by unknown persons in the Seminary where he was a Rector.

    • In Syria Father François Murad was murdered in the convent of the Custody of the Holy Land where he found refuge after the start of the civil war.

    • In the Philippines a lay Catholic, Dexter Condez, was killed with eight shots. He was committed in defending the rights and prerogatives of the indigenous group Ati.


    • In Italy Don Michele Di Stefano was killed with a stick in his bed, at the rectory where he lived alone.


  • The Forest is Weeping

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    José Cláudio Ribeiro Da Silva was shot dead along with his wife Maria do Espírito Santo on Tuesday 24th May 2010 in Maraba, Para State, Brazil.
    Jose (known as "Zé" for short) was a tireless campaigner for the protection of the Amazon forest, and had earned the enmity of those engaged in illegal logging. At a TED presentation in November 2009 Zé said:

    “I can be here today talking with you, and a month from now you know what could happen to me – disappeared. Ask me if I am scared. I am afraid. I am a human being. I have fear. But my fear won’t let me be quiet. As long as I have the power to walk I will be denouncing those who are harming the forest.”

    A banner outside his house reads "A floresta chora" – "The forest is weeping". And we all have reason to, for the cause of the environment on which we all depend is the cause of humanity.
    On the Friday following (28th May 2010) another rural activist was murdered:
    Adelino Ramos spoke out for land reform and against the illegal logging. According to the Pastoral Land Commission of the local Catholic Church, he was shot by a motorist as he sold vegetables in the northwestern Amazon state of Rondonia.
    Over the past 20 years more than 1,150 conservationists have been killed in Brazil. Others include
    Chico Mendes (+1988) and Sr. Dorothy Stang (+2005).
    You can read more about Zé
    Here ze-claudio-e-maria