Midwest Capuchin friars elect provincial leadership for 2023-2026

The 2023-2026 Provincial Council

CHICAGO - Capuchin friar Mark Joseph Costello has been re-elected to a second term as Provincial Minister to lead the Capuchin Franciscan Province of St. Joseph for the next three years. The Provincial Minister serves as the elected leader for the St. Joseph Province of the Order of Friars Minor Capuchin.

Costello, a native of Fond du Lac, Wisconsin, entered the Capuchin order in 1982 and was ordained a priest in 1991. He ministered in Capuchin formation and worked as an architectural and design consultant for churches across the United States. From 2015 to 2020, he served as pastor at several parishes on the Crow reservation in Montana. Costello served as Provincial Minister from 2020 to the present.

In addition, a new provincial council has been elected to advise the Provincial Minister. The council is made up of:

  • First Councilor and Provincial Vicar Friar William Hugo, OFM Cap.
  • Second Councilor Friar Tien Dinh, OFM Cap.
  • Third Councilor Friar Biju Parakkalayil, OFM Cap.
  • Fourth Councilor Friar Nicholas Blattner, OFM Cap.

Friar Wiliam Hugo, a native of Chilton, Wisconsin, is currently the Guardian of St. Bonaventure Monastery in Detroit. Friar Tien Dinh is the Assistant Director of the Capuchin Soup Kitchen in Detroit. Dinh was born in Vietnam and was raised in New Orleans. Both Hugo and Dinh served on the previous Provincial Council. Friar Biju Parakkalayil of Kerala, India is soon to arrive at St. Lawrence Friary in Mt. Calvary Wisconsin where he will minister as Guardian. Friar Nicholas Blattner of Sheboygan Falls, Wisconsin ministers as Mission Secretary based in Detroit for the Province of St. Joseph.

"I am humbled by the responsibility entrusted to me by my Capuchin brothers to lead the Province of St. Joseph for the next three years," said Br. Mark Joseph Costello. "The Provincial Councilors and I will do our utmost to continue our mission based on the model of our brother St. Francis of Assisi. The people of God whom we serve at our ministries, such as the Capuchin Soup Kitchen in Detroit, Capuchin Community Services in Milwaukee and St. Lawrence Seminary in Mt. Calvary, Wisconsin, can be assured of our continued ministry, rooted in contemplative prayer, of putting the Gospel of Jesus Christ into action."

The new leadership team takes office immediately. A new provincial minister and provincial council are elected by the friars of the Province every three years during a Provincial Chapter meeting. The newly-appointed Provincial Minister and Council will serve a three-year term that expires upon the next leadership election at the 49th Provincial Chapter in 2026. The 48th Provincial Chapter occurred June 5-9 at St. Xavier University in Chicago. At this chapter meeting, the friars of the Province met face-to-face to discuss issues facing the Province and to elect new leadership.

About the Capuchin Franciscan Province of St. Joseph
The mission of the friars of the Capuchin Franciscan Province of St. Joseph is one of transforming the world through reverence. Established at Mt. Calvary, Wisconsin in 1857, the Midwest Capuchins are part of an international community of friars following the rule of St. Francis of Assisi. The brothers of the Capuchin Franciscan Province of St. Joseph, headquartered in Detroit, serve in various ministries, including social service, schools, chaplaincy, a retreat house and parishes in Michigan, Wisconsin, Illinois, and Montana.