Capuchin friar Mark Joseph Costello has been appointed Provincial Minister to lead the Capuchin Franciscan Province of St. Joseph for the next three years.

Costello, a native of Fond du Lac, entered the Capuchin order in 1982 and was ordained a priest in 1991. Since 2015, he has served as pastor at a number of parishes on the Crow reservation in Montana.

In addition, a new provincial council has been appointed to advise the Provincial Minister. The council is made up of Provincial Vicar Steve Kropp, and Councilors Bill Hugo, Zoilo “Zoy” Garibay and Tien Dinh. These friars minister in different geographies and capacities throughout the Province. Br. Kropp served as Provincial Vicar under the previous administration while simultaneously ministering as Director of Formation for Post Novitiate and Ministry Formation. Br. Bill Hugo ministers at the Solanus Casey Center in Detroit and was formerly director of the Capuchin Soup Kitchen. Br. Zoy Garibay is rector of St. Lawrence Seminary in Mt. Calvary. Br. Tien Dinh ministers as associate pastor at St. Dennis Parish in Crow Agency, Montana.

The transition to the new leadership team takes effect on the first Sunday of Advent: Nov. 29.

“The newly appointed council and I hope to serve the friars as they fraternally reach out in ministry to the people of God, especially the poor and marginalized,” said Br. Costello. “We realize we have been entrusted as servant leaders. We will do our utmost to support the continuing vision of St. Francis of Assisi in time-honored and new creative ways. We ask for prayers of support as we face today’s challenges.”

A new provincial minister and provincial council are elected by the friars of the Province every three years during a triennial chapter meeting. At this chapter meeting, the friars of the Province meet face-to-face to discuss issues facing the Province and to elect new leadership. However, due to COVID-19, the 2020 chapter meeting was canceled. Instead, the new Provincial leadership was appointed by the Capuchin General Curia in Rome based on a vote taken by the friars of the Province.

The newly appointed Provincial Minister and Council will serve a three-year term and may stand for re-election for a second term at the next triennial provincial chapter in 2023.