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Message from Father Joseph J. Gallardo, OAR, Prior Provincial PDF Print E-mail
Written by augustinian recollects   
Wednesday, 06 August 2014 15:44

Protocol No. 43/2014


To all the Religious of the Province

RE: Official Good News

Dear Brothers,

Together with this circular letter, you will find an English language copy of Cardinal Amato’s letter to our Prior General concerning the status of the Cause of Beatification and Canonization of the Servant of God Bishop Alfonse Gallegos, OAR.

As seen in the Cardinal’s letter, the Positio of the Bishop will not have to undergo a lengthy wait before it is presented to the Congress of Theologians for study. This is indeed good news! Many thanks are owed to Father Samson Silloriquez, OAR, for his tireless efforts on behalf of the Cause of the Servant of God.

Through the Congregation of the Causes of Saints, the Holy See has asked us, as a community, to make the saintly Bishop known to the faithful, and has encouraged us to invoke the heavenly intercession of Bishop Gallegos.

Recently, a number of favors attributed to the intercession of the Bishop have been reported to the Provincial House. This information has been documented and forwarded to Fathers Samson Silloriquez, OAR, and Eliseo Gonzalez, OAR, postulator and vice-postulator of the Cause.

We must remember that only competent Church authorities can declare what is truly a miracle; however, we must take note of the increasing reports of favors attributed to the Bishop which are being reported to the Provincial House and to others. Let us together pray that God’s holy will be accomplished in this great work.

In the near future, each house of the province will receive a printed copy of the Positio so that the religious of the province might become better acquainted with the Servant of God through the study of his life and work.

Once again, let us entrust this great work to the intercession of our Lady, Queen and Mother of the Recollection, and together let us pray for its success.

With every good wish and prayer, I am,


Sincerely yours in Christ,


Father Joseph J. Gallardo, OAR

Prior Provincial


Father Fredric Abiera, OAR

Provincial Secretary


August 6, 2014

The Transfiguration of Our Lord Jesus Christ






Last Updated on Monday, 11 August 2014 13:27
News from the Provincial Residence, West Orange, New Jersey PDF Print E-mail
Written by Fr. Fredric Abiera, OAR   
Thursday, 03 July 2014 20:15


Celebrating the Solemnity of Saint Joseph, husband of Mary, and special protector of the Order of Augustinian Recollects

The friars of Tagaste Monastery, the council members of the Secular Augustinian Recollects of West Orange and some friends of Saint Cloud Monastery joined the community of the Provincial Residence to celebrate the Solemnity of Saint Joseph on March 19th. The monthly regional day of recollection for the friars was also held that day with the discussion of the ordinances of the 22nd Provincial Chapter. Following the discussion, all gathered in the Chapel for Evening Prayer and the singing of the Salve and the Ioseph. Following the Liturgy, all were treated to a reception in the community dining room. The entire celebration was indeed a very nice tribute to Saint Joseph, husband of Mary and special protector of the Order of Augustinian Recollects.


Divine Mercy Sunday at the Provincial Residence

On April 27th, the Narduzzi and Greydanus families joined Fr. Joseph J. Gallardo, OAR, prior provincial, and Fr. Fredric Abiera, OAR, to celebrate Divine Mercy Sunday at the Provincial Residence in West Orange, New Jersey. The Greydanus family provided the image of the Divine Mercy which was placed in the community chapel for the celebration.

The afternoon began with exposition of the Blessed Sacrament and the praying of the holy rosary at 2:00 PM while Fr. Joseph and Fr. Fredric heard confessions. Then, the Chaplet of the Divine Mercy was prayed followed by Benediction, presided over by Fr. Fredric. At 3:00 PM, Fr. Joseph celebrated the Mass with the blessing of the image of the Divine Mercy after communion. Following the liturgy, all were treated to a reception in the community dining room. This afternoon event was indeed a great grace for the community of the Provincial Residence.


West Orange Secular Augustinian Recollects admit two novices

On May 18th, at its monthly gathering, the Secular Augustinian Recollects, Saint Cloud Chapter, admitted two novices. Mr. Joseph Krakoviak, president of the Saint Cloud Chapter, welcomed Timothy Santo and Wilma Tabetha to the trial period by presenting them with the Rule of Saint Augustine, the Rule of Life and Statutes of the Fraternity, and the SAR lapel pin. Within the afternoon there was Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament and Benediction, and the Fraternity celebrated the Feast of Saint Rita by praying the Litany of St. Rita and the blessing and distribution of roses. The election of the president and council members was also held that day. The current president and council members were reelected to their same position for the next three years: Joseph Krakoviak as president of Saint Cloud Chapter, Carol Ann Ford as councilor for spirituality, Elaine Jacobs as councilor for membership, and Margaret Christiano as councilor for hospitality. Father Charles Huse, OAR, the former spiritual director of the chapter, also came to attend this month’s gathering.


Last Updated on Saturday, 05 July 2014 01:52
Written by augustinian recollects   
Thursday, 03 July 2014 19:51

Last June 25, the Positio on the life, virtues and fame of sanctity of the Servant of God Bishop Alphonse Gallegos, OAR, was presented to the Congregation of the Causes of Saints. It answers to the doubt whether the Servant of God practiced in a heroic manner the theological virtues of faith hope and charity to God and to his neighbor and the Cardinal virtues of prudence, justice, temperance and fortitude and has fame of sanctity. It has 640 pages elaborated by Fr. Samson Silloriquez, OAR, Postulator General of the Order of the Augustinian Recollects with the collaboration of Fr. Eliseo Gonzalez, Jr, OAR. It consists primarily of the History of the Cause or the Iter followed from the moment the Cause was opened in the Diocese of Sacramento, California, till it was presented in Rome, the Informatio, which is the presentation of how the Bishop practiced the virtues, the Summarium Testium which are testimonies of 130 witnesses who all knew him personally, an elaborated Documented Biography, the documents pertaining to the Servant of God, and some favors received through his intercession during his life, his death and after his death. The work was directed by Fr. Zdazislaw Kijas, OFMConv, appointed by the Congregation of the Causes of Saints as Relator.

Normally, once the Positio is completed, it is being presented to the Congregation and there it waits for its turn to be studied by the Commission of the Theologians, then by the Commission of the Bishops and Cardinals and finally the Pope confirms his heroic virtues and confer on the Servant of God the title of Venerable. The next phase is the presentation of a miracle through the intercession of the Servant of God for him to be declared blessed. Another miracle is needed for his canonization. Because of the great number of Positio waiting for their turn to be studied, it takes 15 to 17 years of waiting. However, the Congregation can give exemption for those Causes coming from Africa, Asia, Americas and northern Europe. There are few candidates for sainthood from these countries.

Fr. Miguel Miró Miró, OAR, Prior General of the Order of the Augustinian Recollects, together with Fr. Samson Silloriquez, OAR, and Fr. Eliseo Gonzalez, OAR, presented directly the copy of the Positio of Bishop Gallegos to Cardinal Angelo Amato, the prefect of the Congregation of the Causes of Saints, requesting that this be given priority. Bishop Jaime Soto, of the Diocese of Sacramento, also sent a letter to the Cardinal for the same purpose. The Cardinal graciously granted the request and scheduled its study in the year 2016. He indicated that this is a modern cause and Bishop Gallegos would be the first Hispanic saint and an intercessor for the many migrants in the United States, especially the Hispanics.


A brief synthesis of the heroic virtues of Bishop Gallegos

Bishop Alphonse Gallegos, OAR, was on February 20, 1931 in Albuquerque, New Mexico, entered the novitiate of the Order of the Augustinian Recollects on September 2, 1950 and pronounced his first vows on September 3, 1951 in Kansas City. He was ordained to the priesthood on May 24, 1958 in New York, appointed titular Bishop of Sasabe and Auxiliary Bishop of Sacramento, California on September 1, 1981 and had his episcopal ordination on November 4, 1981. A vehicular accident claimed his life on October 6, 1991, at the age of 60.

The Lord did not endow Bishop Gallegos with brilliant intelligence, or a great organizational capacity, or an exceptional oratory, or a sharp ability to confront the problems of his time. Neither did he write books. He had a modest intellectual capacity. Yet one striking characteristic he had, that perhaps only grows in the garden of humility, was his total joyful availability. He did not know how to say “no” to anyone. He ran the risk of a face-to-face encounter with others, with their pain and their joy. He never rushed aimlessly, but put aside his eagerness in order to see and listen to others and gave them hope. In spite of his visual problem, which would have limited his movement, he untiringly dedicated his ministry, first as a priest then as a bishop, to the poor and the sick, the despised and overlooked. He had a special affection to the low riders and the youth, especially those who are out of school, who spent their time in the streets or in the parks, indulged into drugs or committing violence. He was unafraid of going out with them at night, meeting them on their way, entering into conversation with them and always inviting them at the end to go to church on Sunday and to return back to school. They responded willingly because they found in him a father, a friend and someone to go to. He also had a clear stand against abortion, participating at the anti-abortion rallies and praying publicly for the conversion of the abortionists. In some instances he was spat upon, kicked or insulted.

As a Mexican- American, whose roots migrated to America in search of a better life for their families, he also championed the cause of many migrant workers. He went to live with them in the labor camps, spoke in their behalf before the government and found companies to donate for them some of their products. He went out to the existential peripheries, involved himself by word and by deed in their lives, touching the suffering flesh of Christ in others. He took on the “smell of the sheep” and the sheep were willing to hear his voice. (Evangelium Gaudii, 24). He was a shepherd according to the heart of God.


Fr. Samson Silloriquez, OAR

Last Updated on Saturday, 05 July 2014 01:52
Message from our Prior General, Father Miguel Miró, OAR PDF Print E-mail
Written by augustinian recollects   
Wednesday, 02 July 2014 17:53



On June 15, in Baeza, Spain, we celebrated the fiftieth anniversary of the death of Sister Monica of Jesus, an Augustinian Recollect contemplative nun. Particularly noteworthy in her life were the natural ease and spontaneity with which she spoke about God and spiritual things. She viewed everyday happenings in the light of faith. Her self-giving presence to the sisters in her community, the joy and peace that she exuded, even in times of persecution and war, vividly revealed her love for Christ. The virtues of Sister Monica were approved by Pope Saint John Paul II in 1992, and now we are waiting for a miracle so that she can be beatified.

A few days later I was in the Augustinian Recollect monastery in Monteagudo, Spain, where the mortal remains of Saint Ezekiel Moreno are venerated. In that community fourteen young men from several different countries are completing their novitiate, a year of community experience, and giving direction to their lives along paths of commitment and holiness. The novices transmitted contagious hope and expectation; they gave evidence of their desire to live with consistency their life of prayer, fraternity, and apostolic service. They declared that the revitalization of the Order is their future. In the mystery of the human heart, the Lord continues to call followers to accompany him along different paths and to be witnesses of hope.

And on June 25 I was back in Rome. I had to go to the Congregation of the Saints, together with Father Samson Silloriquez, our councilor in charge of promoting the causes of the saints of the Order, and with his assistant Father Eliseo González. We visited the Prefect of the Congregation, Cardinal Angelo Amato, and presented to him the study of the life and virtues of Bishop Alphonse Gallegos, an Augustinian Recollect and Auxiliary Bishop of Sacramento, California, USA. Bishop Alphonse died in a traffic accident in 1991. We explained to the Cardinal that Bishop Alphonse had a serious problem with his vision and so experienced serious difficulties in his studies. As a priest and a bishop he went out of his way to serve the needs of the poor and the sick, immigrants and the marginalized. He befriended the young people on the street to help them in their problems with drugs and violence. They liked to call him “Father Al” or “the chaplain of the low-riders” or “the Bishop of the Barrio,” the troubled barrio of Watts in Los Angeles. He was Hispanic and was a pioneer in Hispanic Ministry. Among the Hispanics he was a witness of hope.

Bishop Alphonse Gallegos, OAR (1931-1991)

The paths of holiness are many and varied, depending on the particular vocation of each individual. In the mystery of the human heart, the Lord continues to call his followers to sanctity in different ways. But all the saints are witnesses of hope; they intercede for us and inspire us by their example. We frequently ask them to intercede for us, and the Lord grants us his favors. To declare a Christian a saint, however, the Church makes no small demands, but boldly requires that, in addition to virtues in a heroic degree, there be a miracle. Or, rather, two miracles granted through the person’s intercession, miracles scientifically proven. To see a miracle requires faith, that simple and profound faith that only God can give and that takes root in a humble heart.

Fr. Miguel Miró, OAR
Prior General
Order of Augustinian Recollects

(from the OAR website: agustinosrecoletos.com)


Last Updated on Wednesday, 02 July 2014 18:06
Message from our Prior Provincial, Father Joseph J. Gallardo, OAR PDF Print E-mail
Written by augustinian recollects   
Monday, 30 June 2014 14:08

Bishop Gallegos: An Example for Our Times

Dear friends,

“How glorious is that kingdom where all the saints rejoice with Christ; clothed in white robes, they follow the lamb wherever he goes.” The Church prays this antiphon for the canticle of Mary on the Solemnity of All Saints. The saints behold God, and from their place in heaven they spur us on to victory and faithfulness and remind us that we are called to holiness.

Many of the religious families in the Church have provided us with saints. These families, through the living out of their different charisms, give to the universal Church examples of holiness to be followed. These holy men and women prove to others that holiness is possible. Their example is especially meaningful, perhaps, to the men and women of each particular community.

In our Recollect family we have many examples of holiness. At the present time, the Order counts thirty-two men and women who are in the various stages of process toward possible canonization. Among these Recollects is The Servant of God, Bishop Alfonse Gallegos (1931-1991). The front cover of our province Newsletter (Volume XLI, Number 2 + Summer 2014) features the saintly Bishop. On June 25, the Positio Super Virtutibus on the life, virtue, and fame of sanctity of Bishop Alfonse was presented to Cardinal Angelo Amato, Prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, by Father Miguel Miró, OAR, Prior General, Father Samson Silloriquez, OAR, and Father Eliseo Gonzalez, OAR, at the Vatican.

The Servant of God was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico on February 20, 1931, professed vows in the Order of Augustinian Recollects in 1951, was ordained a priest on May 24, 1958, and consecrated an Auxiliary Bishop of Sacramento on November 4, 1981. His life tragically ended in a vehicular accident on October 6, 1991.

The holy Bishop was known for his love for the weakest of our society, the poor, the youth, the immigrant, the ill, and above all the unborn. He was a devotee of our Blessed Mother. During my novitiate year, the Bishop paid a visit to the novitiate in Monteagudo, Spain. On that day, he spoke to our novice class of his love for our Lady of Guadalupe. He referred to our lady as “la morenita de Tepeyac,” the dark one of Tepeyac Hill. Tepeyac is the location of our lady’s apparitions in what is today the city of Mexico. I had the privilege of meeting the Bishop on only a few occasions; there are, however, a number of friars in our province who knew the bishop on a much deeper level. Some lived and ministered with him, and at least one was ordained to the priesthood by him. It is my hope that in future issues of our Newsletter, these friars will write and share with us their memories and recollections of The Servant of God. Bishop Gallegos remains a wonderful example of holiness in our own day and age.

Feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus,

June 27, 2014

Father Joseph J. Gallardo, OAR

Prior Provincial


Last Updated on Thursday, 07 August 2014 22:52
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