Fr. Bernard Christen of Andermatt
, legendary 19th century Capuchin general minister and later titular archbishop, was recently celebrated with a three-day symposium in Rome on the occasion of the end of the centennial year of his death. The photo posted here shows Fr. Bernard in a top hat, seated in a buggy on the Kansas plains on September 26, 1891. The buggy was along the North Fork of Big Creek on its way from Munjor to Victoria. Bernard was the first Capuchin general to visit North America, and he visited Kansas after visiting his two blood brothers in San Francisco. In the buggy with Bernard were Fr. Francis Wolff, minister provincial of Pennsylvania; Fr. Gabriel Spaeth, superior and pastor at Victoria; and Fr. Martin Muelders, associate pastor in Victoria. The photo was first published in the international journal of the Order, the Analecta, in 1985, on the occasion of the centenary of the journal, which Bernard himself founded. Another Swiss-born general, Paschal Rywalski
, came to Victoria in 1977 to announce the founding of the Mid-America province, and a third one, Fr. Mauro Joehre
, will be here April 4-10 to preside at our 11th ordinary provincial chapter. [Enlarge the photo by clicking on it].