Province of the U.S.A.
At a glance ...
|Vice Provincial||Fr. Augustine Tharappel|
|Province Councillors||Fr. Luke Kalarickal - Admonitor
Fr. Joseph Mullakkara
Fr. Santy Kurian
Fr. Santhiyagu Arokiam
Our mission in USA is growing. In the beginning of 1996, we were only seven priests in pastoral ministry in USA. Today, sixteen years later, we are 49 priests in pastoral ministry in different dioceses in thirteen states in USA.
Missionaries of St. Francis De Sales have been present in USA for more than 50 years. Confreres from Europe, England, India and USA have been in ministry in parishes in USA during this period of time. There has always been a desire to implant the Congregation in USA. Attempts had been made as early as 1935 to start some sort of mission in the country, but without success.
In 1990, the American Mission of the Congregation became an autonomous mission directly under the authority of the Superior General with Fr. Ken Bayer as Mission Superior.
In 1996, Fr. Emile Mayoraz, then Superior General, commissioned Fr. Augustine Tharappel, from the South West province, to establish a ministry in USA, which was unique to the Fransalian charism in view of raising the then American Mission to a Region. Fr. Augustine began his ministry in the Diocese of Tyler as parochial vicar at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in May 1996. After eighteen months of pastoral ministry, he established Wellspring, Fransalian Center for Spirituality, on January 24, 1998.
Fr. Agnelo Fernandes, Superior General, invited Fr. Augustine Tharappel, Coordinator of Fransalians in USA, to a joint meeting of the General council and the provincials on January 3, 2007. At this meeting after prayerful discernment, a unanimous decision was made to raise the status of the present American Mission to that of a Region of the congregation under the direct authority of the Superior General, thus form the “Missionaries of St. Francis De Sales, USA Region” henceforth referred to as “MSFS USA Region.”
On Tuesday, July 3, 2007, on the feast of St. Thomas the Apostle, the “Missionaries of St. Francis De Sales, USA Region” was inaugurated and Fr. Augustine Tharappel was installed as the first Regional Superior during the celebration of the Eucharist with Most Rev. Alvaro Corrada, the Bishop of Tyler, officiating.
There are 11 permanent members in the Region and 42 short-term members, organized into eight communities. The Region has a house and property in Snellville, Georgia in the diocese of Atlanta, Georgia and one in Whitehouse, Texas, Wellspring Spirituality Center, in the diocese of Tyler, Texas.
July 3rd 2013 the feast day of St Thomas the apostle was a great day for the Congregation of the Missionaries of St Francis de sales and in particular for the members who are working in the United States of America because the existing MSFS USA Region was raised to the status of a Vice Province. The newly elected Vice Provincial, Fr. Augustine Tharappel was installed as Vice Provincial on that day in the presence of a number of confers and a large crowd.
The priests of the USA Region are involved in many different aspects of ministry. Our fifty two priests are involved in pastoral ministry, counseling, spiritual direction and hospital ministry. Several of our Fransalian priests preach parish missions and hold retreats for both individuals and groups. Prayer and contemplation is a daily part of the Fransalian way of life, and our missionaries teach others the contemplative way of life.