Pastor's Corner

Pastor's Corner

10-09-2022Pastor's CornerVery Rev. Robert J. Deehan, VF

The ministry of the Permanent Deacon is a wonderful and unique expression of God’s care for His Church. We are blessed presently to have two Permanent Deacons in our parish: Deacon Don Larose who was ordained in 2020 and Senior Deacon Art Keefe.

I am pleased to announce that we will soon have a third Permanent Deacon assigned to our parish when parishioner, David Cosgrove is ordained a Deacon by Cardinal Seán O’Malley next Saturday, October 15 at 10:00 am at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross, Boston.

He has been in formation for four years preparing for service to the Church as a Permanent Deacon. As David’s time in formal preparation comes to completion with his upcoming ordination, we have another member of our parish community, Youth Faith Formation Minister / Social Media Coordinator, Matt Bensman, who is now in his second year of formation to become a Permanent Deacon. The term “Permanent” distinguishes the deacon’s circumstance from a “Transitional” Deacon, who is a man on his way to becoming a Priest. And, a Permanent Deacon can be a married man, whereas a priest cannot be married. The deacon is ordained by a Bishop by the laying on of hands with the invocation of the Holy Spirit. The Diaconate (deacon) is one of the three degrees of the Sacrament of Holy Orders. The other two degrees are the Presbyterate (priest), and the Episcopate (bishop). Deacons, then, are ordained clergy who are not priests, but rather, work in obedience to and in support of the bishop, and in close fraternal cooperation with priests in their ministry to the People of God. The Second Edition of the National Directory for the Formation, Ministry and Life of the Permanent Deacon in the United States highlights the identity of the deacon as “a living icon of Christ the Servant within the Church,” and emphasizes the role of the deacon as a minister of Word, Liturgy, and Charity in the Christian community. A deacon assists the priest at Mass in several ways such as when he proclaims the Gospel, preaches the homily occasionally, reads the petitions of the Prayer of the Faithful, prepares the altar and distributes Holy Communion. Outside of Mass, a deacon can administer the Sacrament of Baptism, bring Viaticum to the dying, preside at prayer services including Benediction, officiate at wakes, funerals, and burial services, witness Marriages, and impart blessings which are expressly permitted by Church law. As ministers of service/charity, deacons provide outreach to the poor, care for the sick and imprisoned, and offer spiritual and faith formation to adults and young people. He may also carry out various administrative duties both within the parish and for the Archdiocese.

Deacon David will celebrate his First Mass as a Permanent Deacon next Sunday, October 16 at the 10:30 Mass here at Holy Family Church. Please join me in offering him your congratulations, prayers and best wishes as he begins his new ministry among us.

God bless you!

Fr. Bob