Mission Statement: Mount St. Francis is a retreat centre nestled in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains where all are welcome in the name of Christ. The Franciscan Friars, inspired by the vision and example of Saints Francis and Clare of Assisi, in collaboration with the Roman Catholic Diocese of Calgary and many other loyal supporters, have served in this spiritual centre of peace, healing and prayer since its foundation in 1949. Mount St. Francis Retreat Centre is a sponsored ministry of the Franciscans of Canada. For more information, see www.fransciscanfriars.ca.
Susan Campbell was appointed the Director of Mount St. Francis March 1, 2015. Originally from Edmonton, she is a lay woman who has served in adult faith education for over 30 years, starting at St. Francis of Assisi parish where she worked on staff with the Franciscans. Fr. Louis Geelan, it so happens, was the Associate Pastor on the team at the time. She came to Mount St. Francis after serving 18 years as the Director of the Pastoral Centre for the Diocese of Prince George. While there, she oversaw the Diocesan Lay Formation Program and taught in the areas of scripture, liturgy, ecclesiology, Christology and spirituality. She received her theological education from Newman Theological College, Edmonton (B.Th. and M.Th.); St. Paul’s University, Ottawa (completed course work in the Mission Studies program); and the Catholic University of Leuven, Belgium (M.A. Rel. Studies). Most recently, she completed the Spiritual Direction Training Program from the FCJ Centre in Calgary. She is energetic, engaging and a good listener.
Father Dan Gurnick, OFM. I grew up near Rocky Mountain House, AB, with my parents, sister, and brother. Despite various occupations and an architectural diploma my heart longed for God and a new life. After a trip to an orphanage in Peru, I began formation with Franciscans. I made my solemn profession in August 2009 and ordained a priest in January 2010. In August 2016, I joined the retreat team at Mount St. Francis. I am the vocational director for the Franciscans of Canada. I enjoy exercising, hiking, skiing, snowboarding, and gardening.
Friar Michael Perras, OFM was born and raised in rural Saskatchewan, the oldest of four. Along with his siblings he grew up in his parent’s grocery store where he learned about community and service.
Brother Michael appreciates quiet moments of prayer, music, Lego, journaling, being creative in the kitchen, lingering meals, socks, collecting quotes and Christmas. One of his greatest joys is being an uncle and a Godfather. His favorite Saints are of course St. Michael, St. Francis, and St. Clare. His favorite Bible story is Noah’s Ark and his favorite parable is the Lost Coin in Luke 15.
Prior to joining the Franciscans, he served in several communities as a Youth Minister and Pastoral Assistant. Brother Michael holds Certificates in Youth Ministry, Lay Ministry, Liturgical Studies, and Spiritual Direction along with a Bachelor of Theology degree. He is a non-ordained Franciscan Friar (Brother), solemnly professed since August 2019. He is the Guardian (local leader) of the Franciscan community at The Mount, serves as part of the Retreat Team and is on the Canadian Franciscan Provincial Council.
Father Kevin Lynch, OFM, was born in the Peace River Country of Northern Alberta (McLennan). Called to be a Franciscan as a young student at St. Anthony’s College, Edmonton, Alberta, he was ordained in 1962 after studies in Montreal and Ottawa. He taught senior high school science, math and religion with the Edmonton Catholic Schools before becoming Director of Religious Education for that District (1973-95) and served as Head of the Franciscans of Western Canada (1982-92).
Presently Kevin feels blessed to work in his own Order’s Retreat Centre in Cochrane, Alberta, in a ministry dear to his heart. Prior to 13 years at Mount St. Francis Retreat Centre (Cochrane) he spent 11 years in St. Michael’s Retreat Centre in Lumsden, Saskatchewan, where he chaired an inter-church board (Anglican, Evangelical Lutheran and Roman Catholic) that operated the Centre. Retreat ministry allows him the “soul space” to name the God of Jesus Christ in many ways.
Father Robert Mitchell, OFM. Born in North Bay, Ontario, educated there and in Parry Sound, Ontario, Father Bob studied at the University of Western Ontario in London. For some of the years he was involved in teaching. Fr. Bob came west to join the Franciscans. He has served in retreat ministry both at Mount St. Francis and, St. Michael’s Retreat Centre in Lumsden, SK. He has been at the Mount since 1994. For many years he has been, and continues to be, a legendary preacher of retreats and spiritual director.
Hello, I am Fr. Joe Glaab, OFM, the newest member of the Mount St Francis community. I arrived at the Mount in September, 2022. Allow me to share a few points about myself.
- I am a Franciscan Friar, the same community as the Friars at Mount St Francis.
- I previously served in St Joseph the Worker Parish in Richmond, BC for four years.
- I did my first vows as a Franciscan in 2012.
- I was ordained to the Presbyterate in 2017.
- My ministry here in Cochrane is divided between St. Mary Parish and Mount St. Francis Retreat Centre.
- My ministry at the Mount involves school retreats, sacramental ministry, and maintenance.
- I am a loyal fan of the BC Lions… Just want to be clear on where I stand.
Thank you to the extended Mount St Francis family for welcoming me.
Yours in Christ, Fr. Joe Glaab, ofm.
Deb is the Administrative Assistant and is responsible for Bookings and Reception. She comes with many years of office experience in the schools and the energy sector. She has been a staff member since 2011.
Tin is the accountant for Mount St. Francis. She also maintains our mailing lists and oversees the charitable giving records. She started in 2009 and brings many years experience in the financial field.
Jason is the head chef and oversees the kitchen staff. He obtained his Red Seal certification from the culinary program at SAIT. He comes with many years experience in the restaurant industry. He has been the lead in our kitchen since 2012.
Saveria has been at the Mount since 2006. In addition to cooking wonderful meals, she does much of the baking ensuring that there are homemade breads and goodies for all our retreats.
Ross joined the Mount in 2022. He, trained at SAIT through the Professional Cooking Program and comes with experience in restaurants and hotel kitchens.
Matthew assists in the kitchen and dining room during our retreats.
Housekeeping and Maintenance Staff
Johanne and Ruth have served in housekeeping for over a decade. They are very particular about keeping the rooms and facilities clean and tidy.
Herwynn has served as maintenance manager since 2016. He monitors all the mechanical systems of the plant and stays on top of the general repairs, maintenance and groundskeeping.