The award was created to honor the founder of Franciscan Mission Service and to recognize an individual who exemplifies the organization’s mission and Franciscan values. It is presented during the World Care Annual Benefit and Celebration.
About Anselm Moons
Dutch Franciscan friar Fr. Anselm Moons, OFM, passed away on Nov. 14, 2016. A native of Holland, he served as a missionary in Pakistan for 25 years and then traveled widely as a member of the General Council of the Franciscan Order in Rome. In 1985, he came to the U.S. at the request of a group of North American Franciscan friars (OFM) to help prepare friars for overseas mission.
But Fr. Moons deeply believed in the role of the laity in the Church, and wished to encourage them in their desire to go on mission. He believed the “laity are the future of the Church.” With the support of the North American Franciscan friars, Fr. Moons started the Lay Mission Formation Program in 1989 to offer lay Catholics the opportunity to serve overseas in the spirit of Saints Francis and Clare. The first Franciscan Mission Service class was commissioned and sent into the field in 1990.
Fr. Moons was convinced that the missionary task of the Catholic Church extends not only to impoverished areas of the world but also to places of power, affluence and privilege. For this reason, missioners are called to lifelong mission in North America after their service abroad, by drawing on the knowledge, skills, and faith development that were part of their overseas mission experience as the basis for their commitment to social change in the North American Church and society.
In His Own Words
Fr. Anselm Moon’s articles from the World Care newsletter:
“The Challenge of Lay Missioners,” 1990.
“Laity Co-Lead with Clergy,” 1991.
What does being “side by side in the vineyard” look like for Jeff and Teresa Redder, OFS? Well, for starters, it looks like a marriage of 43 years. It looks like raising four children and helping raise six grandchildren. It looks like having served in the United States Airforce in aircraft maintenance and logistics.
For some, walking side by side in these ways would be enough to fill the hours of the day—and then some. But Jeff and Teresa are people who long for more. They have a passion for service, community, and prayer that drew them to become professed members of the Secular Franciscan Order 27 years ago, on Jeff’s birthday!
As members of the Holy Assumption Fraternity in the St. Katharine Drexel Region, Jeff and Teresa have shared the Franciscan spirit through their ministries in diverse settings. Jeff has taught 8th grade confirmation classes 35 years and serves as fraternity Minister. Teresa has been a prison minister at the men’s county jail for 21 years and is the fraternity’s Formation Director. Both are lifelong scouting leaders, serve on their parish’s RCIA team, and visit Jamaica annually for a medical mission in Kingston, where they have met several FMS missioners.
So how did Jeff and Teresa get to know FMS? Through none other than former FMS Executive Director, Fr. Joe Nangle! After attending Fr. Joe’s breakout session at the Secular Franciscan National Quinquennial Congress in 1997, Jeff and Teresa helped make FMS one of the key apostolates of their fraternity. From praying for FMS to remembering missioner birthdays, and from contributing to missioner support-raising to sponsoring annual event tables for young adults, Jeff and Teresa are an integral part of the life of FMS, and we are thrilled to honor them with this year’s Anselm Moons Award.
Congratulations, and thank you for all the ways you minister to God’s people, including those that minister to other through service with FMS!
Fr. Larry Snyder wrote Think and Act Anew: How Poverty in America Affects Us All and What We Can Do About It, which calls for commitment to innovative approaches to combating poverty. His writings are based on his 10 years as the president of Catholic Charities USA (CCUSA), the national office of more than 160 Catholic Charities agencies that provide help and create hope for more than 9 million people a year. Under Fr. Snyder’s leadership, CCUSA led responses to natural disasters, helped establish the creation of a first-of-its-kind domestic anti-poverty lab, launched a national social innovation initiative, and continued to serve as an advocate for those in poverty before Congress and the White House. In 2009, President Barack Obama appointed Snyder to the President’s Advisory Council of Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships.
In a previous role as CEO of Catholic Charities of Minneapolis/St. Paul, Fr. Snyder founded a full-time lay service organization for young adults. In his new role as Vice President for Mission at the University of St. Thomas in Minnesota, Fr. Snyder promotes service as a way to recognize the connectedness between all human beings and all of creation.
“I have tried to promote engagement with individuals and communities in need my whole life. It is truly in that human exchange that transformation of individuals and society can take place,” Snyder said. “I believe in the principles of service and engagement and share them with Franciscan Mission Service. Some truly remarkable people have received this award and I am honored to be numbered in their company.”
Franciscan Mission Service is pleased to celebrate Jack Jezreel for his more than 30 years of working with parishes and dioceses to form new disciples for peace, justice, and hope by encouraging parishioners to engage in outreach and social change.
Mr. Jezreel is the founder and president of JustFaith Ministries, which creates and supports formation processes intended to inspire commitment to social mission. The program has had extraordinary results and has been recognized nationally as a potent strategy for empowering social ministry. We celebrate the lasting impact Mr. Jezreel and JustFaith have already had on more than 40,000 parishioners across the country, including some of our own lay missioners.
Mr. Jezreel holds an undergraduate degree in philosophy and religion from Furman University and a Master of Divinity degree from the University of Notre Dame. Before directing his attention to formative education, he spent six years in a Catholic Worker community, providing basic and emergency services to homeless men and women in Colorado. From there he moved to a parish in Louisville, Kentucky, where he developed JustFaith. He still lives in Louisville, is married to Maggie, and they have three adult daughters.
It is because of his unwavering dedication to transforming the North American Church through lay formation that encourages social mission that we honor Mr. Jezreel.
Franciscan Mission Service is pleased to celebrate Sr. Pat Farrell for her humble and prayerful leadership and her courageous commitment to Gospel living.
Sr. Pat is the past-president of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR), which represents 80 percent of women religious in the U.S. The LCWR assists their members in furthering the mission of Christ by fostering dialogue and collaboration among congregations, and by initiating and strengthening relationships with groups concerned with the needs of society.
As a Sister of St. Francis of Dubuque, Sr. Pat currently serves as a vice president in the congregation’s leadership. While her early ministries included teaching in high schools and parishes in the U.S., she felt called to serve in Latin America as a missioner.
In 1980, Sr. Pat began her service in Chile during Augusto Pinochet’s violent dictatorship. After spending about five years at a parish, she served in the capital as part of the nonviolent resistance movement. In 1986 Sr. Pat went to El Salvador, where a bloody civil war was raging that threatened the lives of even Catholic religious and lay missioners. She worked in a refugee camp and tried to help resettle residents in the city of Suchitoto by communicating with the military leaders and guerrillas. She also worked as a peacemaker and bridge-builder between Salvadorans divided into factions of the rebel movement.
It is because of this unwavering commitment of service to the poor, advocacy for the marginalized, and faithful living of the Gospel that we honor Sr. Pat.
In the 1950s and ’60s, Ambassador Melady noticed that Africa was on the brink of change and independence. He enthusiastically sought ways to become active in African affairs, first with the Africa Service Institute. Sponsored by the Catholic Interracial Council of New York, ASI strengthened the relationship between U.S. and Africa and supplemented weak American outreach to developing countries. Through ASI, the Meladys assisted African diplomats and officials living in the New York area, in addition to helping African students find housing and part-time jobs during in an era of strong American racial tensions.
Today, Ambassador Melady serves as Senior Diplomat in Residence at The Institute of World Politics in Washington, DC. Dr. Margaret Melady is president of Melady Associates, a firm specializing in public affairs and educational consulting. Together they recently authored “Ten African Heroes: The Sweep of Independence in Black Africa” (Orbis, 2011), in which they discuss their experiences in Africa from 1961 to 1967.
Update: Ambassador Melady passed away on Jan. 6, 2014 at the age of 86. Our prayers are with Dr. Melady and their family.
In 1948, at age 17, Dorothy Stang joined the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur. She showed a passion for mission, and in 1966 was sent to the sisters’ province in Brazil. She ministered primarily to the rural poor, and gradually became an advocate for their rights, denouncing the wealthy landowners, ranchers, and illegal loggers who were destroying their livelihood. For this she was subjected to harassment and received numerous death threats. On February 12, 2005, Sr. Dorothy was shot and killed by two men hired by local landowners. When confronted by the killers, she had opened her Bible and begun to read from the Beatitudes, “Blessed are the poor in spirit.” After numerous trials, four men are now serving prison terms for the crime.