The late Fr. Joe Rayes, left, and Br. Scott Obrecht, right, were honored by the Franciscan Alumni Assn.
Every year the Board of the Franciscan Alumni Assn. talks about Franciscan alumni to be honored with our Christian Life Award and our Humanitarian Award. These awards are usually given at our annual FAA Reunion in June, though Covid-19 has interrupted our reunions for the past two years. This year the board has chosen to honor the memory and life of Fr. Joe Rayes with the Christian Life Award. Many of us gained much from Joe when he served as Novice Master in the province. Others knew him through his inspired preaching, retreats, and spiritual direction. Joe continues to be held in high regard among us alumni, and we wanted to recognize his many gifts and contributions.
The board also chose to honor Br. Scott Obrecht this year with the Humanitarian Award. In making the announcement, Rick Kasper, Chair of the Awards Committee, explained, “We have based our decision on the many, many years of service you have given to the people of the Philippines, the Southwest missions, to the provincial Mission Office, and to Friars Club. It is also amazing that you were instrumental in bringing [St.] Mother Teresa of Calcutta to Cincinnati [in 1981] to speak to the province and friends of the province. We sincerely thank you, Scott, and honor you with this award.’
I was blessed to be given the plaque from Rick to give to Scott when I returned from vacation. Here he is, holding the FAA Humanitarian Award in our meditation garden at St. Francis Retreat House in Easton, Pa. Congratulations, Scott!