The Capuchin Mission/Seraphic Mass Association has been in existence in the Capuchin Order since 1899. It was begun by a young Swiss woman, Miss Frieda Folger. She founded the organization in which its members sought material means for the work of the foreign missions. They shared in the work of the missionaries and also in the prayers and Holy Masses offered annually by the members of the Capuchin Order. The organization, bearing the title of “Seraphic” in honor of St. Francis, often called “the Seraphic saint,” has been blessed by many popes.
Our own beloved Blessed Solanus Casey, whose Cause for Canonization is now in Rome, always recommended to the faithful these enrollemnts, support of the missions, frequent reception of the sacraments, and prayer.
The Capuchins of the St. Joseph Province began by serving German-speaking immigrants beginning in 1857. As more immigrant groups entered the country, the friars expanded their work among the Irish, Italian and other European groups. At the beginning of the twentieth century, ministry was extended to the Native Americans in Montana and to the African American communities, especially in Milwaukee. Several foreign missionaries departed for India and China in the first third of the century. In 1938, the province received the care of the overseas mission fields in Bluefields, Nicaragua, and in Guam. In 1988, the Province of St. Joseph was assigned the mission of Panana in addition to already existing mission fields. Since that time, its friars have worked in a many different nations in various parts of the world.
Capuchin Overseas Missions