How His Cause Is Proceeding 

June 22, 2024, marks the 25th anniversary of the death of our confrere, Friar Martin de Porres Maria WARD, OFM Conv. Friar Martin was born March 20, 1918 and died June 22, 1999. He was the first African American Conventual Franciscan vocation in North America. After his studies in the United States at St. Francis Seminary in Staten Island, New York, and at St. Anthony-on-Hudson Major Seminary in Rensselaer, New York, and after his ordination in 1955, he and six other friars departed for Brazil.

In 2022, during the last Provincial Chapter of the Province of Our Lady of the Angels in the USA, Friar Julian ZAMBANINI was appointed Vice-Postulator of the cause and a Historical Commission was created, composed of two friars from the United States: Friars James MCCURRY and Douglas MCMILLAN, along with four friars from the Provincial Custody of the Immaculate Conception in Brazil: Friars Ronaldo GOMES DA SILVA, Marcelo dos Santos SILVA, Robson MALAFAIA BARCELLOS, and Carlos Roberto de Oliveira CHARLES. This group is preparing a report on the life of Friar Martin de Porres WARD. Once the Dicastery for the Causes of Saints approves the cause presented by the bishops of Brazil, the report of the Historical Commission will be sent to Rome to draft the final positio, which is an extended analysis of the documents supporting the cause. The positio will be presented to the Dicastery for the Causes of Saints by the bishops of Brazil and to the Postulator General of the Order, Friar Zdzisław KIJAS. The Dicastery for the Causes of Saints (formerly the Congregation for the Causes of Saints), is the Dicastery of the Roman Curia that oversees the canonization process of candidates for sainthood. There are certain levels the candidate must attain first, such as being declared “heroic in virtue” and beatification. After preparing a case, including the approval of miracles, it is presented to the Pope, who decides whether to proceed with beatification or canonization.
Please follow the following links for more information on the life of Friar Martin de Porres WARD; how his cause is being promoted by friars in Brazil and the faithful of Andrelândia (Brazil) where he is buried; and the prayer for his cause. Feel free to print and share this information in your ministries.

Prayer for the Canonization of Friar Martin de Porres Maria WARD:

O glorious Most High God, who deigns to glorify in heaven the souls of those who served and glorified you on earth, hear our prayers (petitions in silence), and according to the design of Your Divine Providence, deign to glorify your servant Friar Martin Maria, who, by his love, desired to offer his life for the education and service of the youth, the poor and the sick, and that like our “compadre” we, too, may progress in the service of the most needy. Amen!

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Please go to the links below for more articles about Friar Martin de Porres WARD:

  1. How the Faithful and Friars Promote Friar Martin’s Cause in Brazil
    Or (!AiGFmpk0RqSDhbdGLuG9Nrg31CxEqg?e=x3h9pa) At the end of the PDF, there is a brief video link.
  2. News articles on Friar Martin de Porres WARD