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Flooding in the missions

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A neighbor of St. Anthony's Kitchen waves as the water flows by

A neighbor of St. Anthony’s Kitchen waves as the water flows by

Help and hope in the face of despair


3-foot-high water down the street from St. Anthony's Kitchen

3-foot-high water down the street from St. Anthony’s Kitchen

(Monday, widespread flooding followed four hours of torrential rain in Negril, Jamaica. In its wake, a number of families struggled to put their lives back together.)

This past Monday afternoon Joan Cooney (our Get Kids to School coordinator) and I headed to Savanna-la-mar to buy a bicycle for one of our girls who had perfect attendance this past term and to buy more uniforms and shoes for the start of school. It had just started to rain as we left Negril.  Finishing our business, we headed home. The intensity of the rain picked up and we soon encountered serious flooding on the main road. Fortunately our fourwheel drive X-Trail, sitting high, passed through pools of 3-foot high water. Joan occasionally would utter, “Oh my God!” As we approached Negril the mantra increased in frequency. We were shocked by the raging water rushing down from the hills and the widespread flooding. By now I had joined Joan in the “Oh my God” mantra.

Camping out at Mary, Gate of Heaven

Camping out at Mary, Gate of Heaven

When I got home I had 14 missed calls from Jeanese, a parishioner. I called… “Father, we are flooded out… everything gone!” Jeanese and her extended family (visitors to Negril would know Naldo, Papi, Jodi and Tikka) live in two small board houses, four rooms total. The yard was filled with debris. The first thing I saw upon entering the house was a large pile of stuffed dolls (like Beanie Babies) soaking wet and mudcovered.  The only thing dry was what could be piled on top of several tall cabinets – all bedding and clothes were “wetted up”, as we say.

Monday night we had about 20 people sleeping in our church hall. On the way home we stopped at a grocery store and purchased what we would need for dinner and for breakfast. I gathered every towel, sheet, pillow and cushion at the friary that I could find. Next morning, by the time I took our dog J.B. out for his morning “break,” our guests were already eating breakfast.

The clean-up begins

The clean-up begins

Back in the yard of Jeanese, the clean-up began.  Much-needed supplies to start cleaning were purchased, a truckload of ruined goods were hauled off to a nearby dumpster and a dozen jumbo garbage bags filled with wet, dirty bedding, clothes and curtains were carried to a laundry. I was touched to see Jodi and her cousin, at a laundry tub, cleaning each and every little stuffed toy. Ms. Pearl and St. Anthony’s Kitchen provided lunch for everyone on Tuesday and Wednesday. By Wednesday afternoon several of the local hotels had come through with some bedding, towels and other household needs. Some mattresses had just been delivered to St. Julie (one of our churches) from Food for the Poor – God’s grace at work.

Jodi and a cousin scrubbing the dolls.

Jodi and a cousin scrubbing the dolls.

On Monday night in the grocery store Jeanese told me it was her birthday. “Oh my God!” I wished her a happy birthday and assured her that everything would be OK, which almost seems trite. But it’s true! We will have to get her cake when all is back in order.

Learn more about our missions in Jamaica:
Mary, Gate of Heaven
St Anthony’s Kitchen Face book page
St Joseph Parish, Sav-la-Mar Face book page

This article was originally published in the SJB News Notes, August 14, 2014, edited by Toni Cashnelli

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Remembering Robin Williams

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He loved the troops, and they loved him back


(In December of 2007, Chaplain Col. Robert Bruno was asked to accompany a USO tour of military bases in Kuwait, Qatar, Iraq, Afghanistan, Kyrgyzstan, Italy and Spain. Headlining the tour was Robin Williams. Bob reminisced about their travels following the comedian’s death this week.)

Actor-comedian Robin Williams was "deeply concerned" about folks in uniform.

Actor-comedian Robin Williams was “deeply concerned” about folks in uniform.

I have been reflecting on that December 2007 trip to Southwest Asia. It was the USO Holiday Tour for our deployed service personnel. Among the entertainers were Robin Williams, Kid Rock, Lance Armstrong and Ronan Tynan. We logged a ton of flight hours, scheduled to do 15 shows in seven countries in six days. Each performer had their on-stage and off-stage persona. Off-stage, Robin was genuinely interested in and deeply concerned about the well-being of our folks in uniform. He was very much informed as to their circumstances and issues. I had the feeling that he maintained personal relationships and correspondence with many of them.

On-stage, he was the center of gravity and synergy of energy. Upon being introduced, he just exploded into hilarity. He drew energy from the audience and returned it to them a hundredfold. There was something of a script as he went from show to show, but no two of his performances were the same. He tried to personalize each one as circumstances permitted.

Fr. Bob Bruno, OFM, (center) during a deployment in Kuwait in 2010

Fr. Bob Bruno, OFM, (center) during a deployment in Kuwait in 2010

Robin was very respectful of me as chaplain and priest, expressing his gratitude for the support the Chaplain Corps provided our troops more than once. Shortly after we returned to the U.S., I received a package from his agent in Hollywood. It was a bound script of his movie License to Wed, in which he plays the role of a priest. On the inside of the front cover is a picture of him in a Roman collar on which he wrote: “To Father Bob: bless you forever”, followed by his signature. I’ve never watched the movie in its entirety, but now I plan to do so, following his written script.


Depression can be deadly
An estimated 19 million Americans suffer from major depression, the illness that reportedly drove actor-comedian Robin Williams to take his own life. To learn more about depression and how to help those who are in crisis, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).

This article was originally posted in the SJB News Notes, August 14, 2014, edited by Toni Cashnelli

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Estate Planning for Our Times

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Estate Planning for Our Times
Thursday, Sept 18, 2014
St Anthony Shrine Hall
5000 Colerain Avenue
Cincinnati, OH 45223
Time 3-5

If you do not have an estate plan or would like to review the one you have, I strongly encourage you to join us.  You will hear how sound estate planning can save taxes, avoid probate, and decrease family dissension at times of great stress. An experienced estate-planning attorney will lead the seminar.

Having an up-to-date estate plan is an act of Christian stewardship that can not only save your family taxes and unnecessary legal fees but, more importantly, may also prevent damaging family misunderstandings. I hope the information you gain at the seminar will be a helpful guide as you make decisions concerning your future and the future of your family.

Persons of all ages and estates of all sizes will benefit from this presentation. RSVP by phone 513-721-4700 X 3222 or email: to Colleen Cushard. Seats are limited, please call today to register. Light refreshments will be provided.

Once you have provided for your family members in your estate plan, please consider a thoughtful bequest to the Franciscan Province of St. John the Baptist.  Your bequest helps ensure that your wishes for the future of the Franciscans will be honoured. We have been able to sustain many of today’s outreach programs due to the generosity and vision of our former supporters. Your bequest endows the future.  A complimentary estate planning guide will be provided.

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How to pray the Chaplet of St. Anthony of Padua

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St Anthony Chaplet
St. Anthony is the Patron Saint of Lost Items, the Poor
and Travelers.  The Chaplet of St. Anthony consists of thirteen
sets of three beads, usually attached to this chaplet is
a medal of St. Anthony and the Child Jesus.

Begin by making the Sign of The Cross…” On each set of three beads pray one “our Father” on the first bead, one “Hail Mary” on the second bead, and one “Glory Be” on the third bead.

The Our Father (The Lord’s prayer):
Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name; thy kingdom come; thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.

For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours, now and forever. Amen.

The Hail Mary:
Hail Mary. Full of grace, The Lord is with thee; Blessed are thou among women, And blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, Pray for us sinners, now, and at the hour of our death. Amen.

The Glory Be:
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son and to the Holy Sprit. As it was in the beginning is now and ever shall be world with out end. Amen.

During each of the thirteen sets of three beads meditate on the following themes:

1. St. Anthony, who raised the dead, pray for those Christians now in their agony, and for our dear departed.
2. St. Anthony, zealous preacher of the Gospel, fortify us against the errors of the enemies of God, and pray for the Holy Father and the Church.
3. St. Anthony, powerful with the Heart of Jesus, preserve us from the calamities which threaten us on account of our sins.
4. St. Anthony, who drove away devils, make us triumph over their snares.
5. St. Anthony, lily of heavenly purity, purify us from the stains of the soul and preserve our bodies from all dangers.
6. St. Anthony, healer of the sick, cure our diseases and preserve us in health.
7. St. Anthony, guide of travelers, bring to safe harbor those who are in danger of perishing and calm the troubled waves of passion which agitate our souls.
8. St. Anthony, liberator of captives, deliver us from the captivity of evil.
9. St. Anthony, who restores to young and old the use of their limbs, obtain for us the perfect use of the senses of our body and the faculties of our soul.
10. St. Anthony, finder of lost things, help us to find all that we have lost in the spiritual and temporal order.
11. St. Anthony, protected by Mary, avert the dangers which threaten our body and our soul.
12. St. Anthony, helper of the poor, help us in our needs and give bread and work to those who ask.
13. St. Anthony, we thankfully proclaim thy miraculous power, and we beseech thee to protect us all the days of our life. Amen

To complete this chaplet pray the Miraculous Repository by Saint Bonaventure

The Miraculous Repository

If miracles thou fain would see, Lo, error, death, calamity. The leprous stain, the demon flies, from beds of pain the sick arise. (The hungry seas forego their prey, The prisoner’s cruel chains give way; While palsied limbs and chattels lost Both young and old recovered boast.)

And perils perish, plenty’s hoard, Is heaped on hunger’s famished board; Let those relate who know it well, Let Padua on her patron tell. (The hungry seas forego their prey, the prisoner’s cruel chains give way; While palsied limbs and chattels lost Both young and old recovered boast.)

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son and to the Holy Sprit. As it was in the beginning is now and ever shall be world with out end. Amen.

(The hungry seas forego their prey, The prisoner’s cruel chains give way; While palsied limbs and chattels lost Both young and old recovered boast.)

V – Pray for us, blessed Anthony;
R – That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Let us pray. O God, let the votive commendation of Blessed Anthony, Thy Confessor, be a source of joy to Thy Church, that she may always be fortified with spiritual assistance, and may deserve to possess eternal joy. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

The Sign of the Cross:
“In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.”


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Br. Dominic Lococo, OFM

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Br. Dominic Lococo, OFM

Br. Dominic Lococo, OFM

For 60 years Br. Dominic Lococo has followed St. Francis.  He has been his Brothers’ Keeper, taking care of body and soul (sic).


As a Tertiary Brother, he was a tailor and made their habits. He was trained as a shoemaker and made sandals for newly invested friars for Mt. Alverno Franciscans. He has also been a sacristan contributing to the care of the souls of his brother friars.

His Italian roots and love of food helped him embark on his assignment as a chef in Oldenburg, Indiana, cooking for as many as 60 friars at a time.  One of his first recipes was his mother’s spaghetti sauce.

He served as spiritual assistant to the Third Order for 12 years.  He also excelled at selling subscriptions to St Anthony Messenger Magazine, a Franciscan Media publication.

Br. Dominic sells St. Anthony Chaplets at the Feast of St. Anthony

Br. Dominic sells St. Anthony Chaplets at the Feast of St. Anthony

For 32 years he read for visually impaired listeners at the Radio Reading Services for the Blind. “They would let me read for a half hour of whatever I wanted, like Angels Among Us and Guideposts, a non-denominational publication.”

In all, he has had 14 assignments, most of which have been in the Cincinnati to Oldenburg area.   “We call it the Franciscan Beltway”.

Br. Dominic’s parents were married in Sicily.  They moved here after their first son was born.  “My Father owned a grocery in Louisville, Kentucky, selling lots of fruits and vegetables.  Mom and Dad spoke Sicilian at home, a dialect of Italian.  There were five of us boys and we would inadvertently mix in English a lot when with our parents, but soon were fluent with the help of our playmates.  It was strange when I went to Italy for my Jubilee visit in 2008, celebrating 50 years as a friar.  I stayed with cousins in Sicily.  After all that time, I still recalled and could speak Sicilian.  Italian is like a different language to me and I prayed no one would speak it to me expecting that I knew their language”.

At 82, he lives at Mercy Winton Woods, the former St. Francis Seminary, in one of independent living apartments with lush gardens and woods.  He is still very active and exercises at a health club.  He has a hearing impairment but does not allow it to get in the way of staying healthy.

Br. Dominic with Santa Claus at the Northgate Mall ministry last December

Br. Dominic with Santa Claus at the Northgate Mall ministry last December

He uses his creative talents making St. Anthony Chaplets, 13 sets of three beads and a medal of the Saint.  It is a rosary of meditations and prayers to St. Anthony.  Click here for instructions in praying the chaplet.  Br. Dominic offers them at various Franciscan events.

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St. Anthony hears your prayer no matter where you are!

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Jim Scheeler, a brother of SJB Provincial Minister Fr. Jeff Scheeler, is a Kroger Grocery Store Manager.  He was interrupted on a busy day to assist an elderly lady to find her car keys.
Pope John XXIII

Pope John XXIII


He tried to hone in where to begin looking in his huge store.  “Where were you last, Ma’am?” he asked. “I have no idea!” she answered, obviously shaken by her loss.  Jim calmed her by showing his car key.  “Does your key look like this one?”  “Yes, Yes, but there is a picture of a dead Pope on it, too!” “That helps!” Jim replied.

Believing she was Catholic, he said, “Listen, let’s say a quick prayer to St. Anthony to ask him to help you find it.”  But what if we don’t find it?” she worried.  “”We will take you home, then, so don’t fret.” he assured her.

Right when their 30 second prayer was finished, there was a call from the Pharmacy.  “”We found the keys!  Someone is bringing them up to you right now!”  There was a picture on the key fob of Pope John XXIII.


aboutstanthonyWe’d love to hear your St. Anthony story too.  Use our Contact Page or Email: or Call Colleen Cushard at: 513-721-4700.  Share your prayers with us and our online community at our Prayer Page.


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St. Anthony: Patron Saint of Expectant Mothers

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We receive many stories of St. Anthony’s intercession.  This is a beautiful one of joy.


by Francisco de Zurbaran (1640)

by Francisco de Zurbaran (1640)

My name is Jennifer. Back in 2009 I suffered a miscarriage at 7 weeks. We desperately wanted a sibling for my 2 year old son. A few months after the miscarriage my family was at our cabin in Michigan. When it came time to find a church we had two choices St. Anthony or Saint Mary, randomly we choose St. Anthony. When we got there I noticed the St. Anthony statue of him holding baby Jesus in the vestibule.

That’s when it hit me, this is St. Anthony of Padua!! I had prayed to him daily with my first pregnancy as my aunt (from Cincinnati) had given me your pamphlet with the prayer for an expectant mother & her unborn child. I KNEW immediately in my heart that we would have a second child. I was overcome with emotion and after mass I teared up as I explained to my husband. Sure enough within 3 months we were pregnant again and Anthony Richard was born in August 2010 and named after St. Anthony!

I love to tell this story! Glad I could share it with you!

God Bless you,


St. Anthony Statue at the ShrineWe’d love to hear your St. Anthony story too.  Use our Contact Page or Email: or Call Colleen Cushard at: 513-721-4700.  Share your prayers with us and our online community at our Prayer Page.


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Meet our new St. Anthony Shrine Guardian

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Fr. CarlFr. Carl Langenderfer, OFM grew up in a suburb outside of Cincinnati.  He is the oldest of five children, two brothers and two sisters.  One of his brothers, Fr. Max Langenderfer is also a Franciscan friar serving in our Jamaican missions.

Fr. Carl is a soft spoken, kind-hearted man with an innate talent with technical matters.  He is a craftsman of many sorts and he has a broad spectrum of interests that include reading novels and skimming cookbooks, cooking, gardening and manual skills cultivated from a very young age by his parents.

From the time he was in grade school at St. Gabriel’s in Glendale, Ohio, his father who built houses during the summer break, would take his young sons along to learn the trade.  That is where Carl got hands-on instruction in architecture, electrical work, laying plans, setting foundations, and managing construction.

Young Carl was rewiring lamps in grade school and planned and wired one of the homes his father built when he was only a sophomore at Roger Bacon High school.   That house is still standing.

Father Carl joined the friars in 1964 and was ordained in 1971. His first assignment was as a religious instructor at Bishop Luers High School in Ft. Wayne, IN. He remained there for four years. For the next ten years, he served in various positions as a member of the formation team (training program for future friars) in Ohio, Michigan and Indiana.

DSC_4745-001 EDIT 300He then served in pastoral duties from 1986-1996 at Holy Rosary parish in Houma, LA and from 1997-2005 in St Clements in Cincinnati.

In 2005, he moved to St Anthony Shrine and Friary to serve as Vicar and Director of Postulants. On July 1, 2014, he will take over duties as the St Anthony Shrine Guardian.  We think he is a perfect fit. We are really looking forward to working with him.  Among many other responsibilities, he will continue to light candles at the Shrine for your intentions.

A couple of interesting notes about Fr. Carl…he celebrated his very first Mass on June 13, the feast of St Anthony.  He also has already spent one year as St Anthony Shrine Guardian back in 1978 when he inherited the project of the chapel renovation.

Welcome Fr. Carl.  We are looking forward to working with you!

Fr. Carl at St. Anthony Shrine with his mother Florence, and brother Max, also a Franciscan friar.

Fr. Carl at St. Anthony Shrine with his mother Florence, and brother Max, also a Franciscan friar.

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Thanks Br. Gene, we’ll miss you

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Br. Gene loves sports and is an avid Cincinnati Reds fan.

Br. Gene loves sports and is an avid Cincinnati Reds fan.

On July 1, Br. Gene Mayer, OFM will complete his nine year tenure as the Guardian at St Anthony Shrine. During that time he also served as Province Secretary.  His terms are limited by regulation.

We will certainly miss our everyday interaction with Br. Gene.  He can make you laugh in an instant…even if the situation is not particularly funny.  People who really don’t know Br. Gene have said he is like a growly old bear.  But all of us who know and love Gene know that he is that growly old bear with the heart of a marshmallow.

“He will truly give you the shirt of his back!” remarked Fr. Jeff Scheeler, Provincial Minister.

His friends are forever and they have said he is there for them in joy and sorrow. Several long time co-workers and friends said that he models the words in the present saying.  He “Lives passionately.  Laughs often.  And loves generously.”

Fr. Carl Langenderfer, OFM

Fr. Carl Langenderfer, OFM

Holding a Bachelors degree in Philosophy and a Masters in Religious Education, he taught Religion at Roger Bacon for 22 years.  Eleven of those years he served as Athletic Director. “I didn’t smile until November in order to get the kids in line!” he grinned.

Br. Gene will now return to his beloved Roger Bacon High School to serve as the Advancement Specialist in their development department.  We will miss him and his wicked sense of humor but are thrilled to know that he leaves the Shrine Guardianship in the very capable hands of Fr. Carl Langenderfer.

Father Carl will continue to light your candles and take care of all the responsibilities at the St Anthony Shrine.  He is a kind, soft-spoken friar who is always ready to help in any way possible.  We will introduce you to him in the next e-newsletter.


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The “Other Brown” needs St. Anthony too

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Enjoy this story from one of our Facebook followers


'St Anthony of Padua' by Benozzo Gozzoli (1421-1497) Public domain

‘St Anthony of Padua’ by Benozzo Gozzoli (1421-1497) Public domain

One cold Snowy/Icy day in a suburban Detroit Parish, I was visiting the maintenance man when the UPS driver who had just made a delivery, came back in to say he had to use the phone to call his boss as he couldn’t find the keys to his truck!

The maintenance man, me, and driver went back out and combed through the 8″ of snow & slush around his truck for a half hour with no luck.

So I say to the driver, “St. Anthony has never failed me..”

I told him to say a quick prayer to him which he did.  We decided to go back out one more time to look, and Saints be praised!  They were sitting pretty as can be right on the bumper in plain sight!  He called his boss back and said never mind St. Anthony had found the keys!

Would like to have seen the look on his boss’ face….

– Mike

ShrineWe received over 85 replies from our Facebook followers.

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We’d love to hear your St. Anthony story.  Use our Contact Page or Email: or Call Colleen Cushard at: 513-721-4700.  Share your prayers with us and our online community at our Prayer Page.


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