October / November 2018 - Vol. 100

Brotherhood of Hope Update September 2018

Brotherhood of Hope

38 years ago today (September 14) the Brotherhood of Hope was founded! We are eternally grateful to the Lord for His faithful love shown through the Triumph of the Cross! Grateful also for the faithful legacy of our founding brothers, Fr. Philip, Br. Stephen and Fr. Paul. Thank you brothers for your generous "YES!" over these many years!

Brother Ken Appuzo Reflects on the "Disappearing Vocation"
to Religious Life and his Decision to Join the Brotherhood of Hope

Brother Ken ApuzzoBrother Ken Apuzzo is the general superior of the Brotherhood of Hope, a new community of men who share the Catholic faith with students on secular college campuses. He ministers at the University of Minnesota.

Brother Ken is from the Bronx in New York City. While attending Rutgers University in New Jersey, he met the brothers, who had just begun doing campus ministry. He went on retreat with them, and his life was changed. He said, “I had been Catholic, but never had a personal encounter with the Lord. I had faith that God existed, but He was not part of my life.”

He was also impressed with the quality of men who were joining the Brotherhood of Hope. The community’s founder, Fr. Philip Merdinger, he continued, “had clear conviction and insight into collapse of celibacy in the Church … in our sex-crazed age, lifelong religious celibacy had become an absurdity to many people.”

Brother Ken calls the vocation to become a brother a “disappearing vocation,” and believes that “the Lord is using the Brotherhood of Hope to bring about a religious renewal.”

Brother Ken and his fellow brothers follow a “daily rhythm of prayer,” which includes an hour of adoration. They then head out to their assigned college campuses, meeting and working with students. Many have been receptive to the brothers’ message, he said, “discovering God’s love, with many moving on to become leaders in the Church.”

This reflection was written by Jim Graves for the National Catholic Register Blog, dated September 1, 2018

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