This weekend was an important one for the seminarians of our diocese, as some of the ranks of men were raised to the order of Deacon! Now that Deacons Daniel Koehl and Stephen Felicichia have committed themselves to their promises of celibacy, prayer, and obedience, they are, God-willing, at the service of all the faithful of our diocese in ministry until death. They have, in a spiritual sense, wed themselves to the bride of Christ in the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend. Praise God! After a summer in a parish (much like seminarian Johnny), they will be sent back for one more year of preparation for priesthood, so that they can offer the sacraments of Mass, Confession, and Anointing of the Sick to the faithful.
Keep them in your prayers, and pray for the three men who will be ordained priests on June 1st: Deacons Daniel Niezer, Jose Arroyo, and Spenser St. Louis. May God grant them a smooth transition from seminary life into priestly ministry. It is a bit like jumping into a rushing river - with the “life preserver” of God’s abiding presence! While an exciting life, the Lord’s grace is needed to make it through well. God bless them for their courage and generosity.
As the school year winds down, and the sun makes for late nights and early mornings, many are looking forward to a different pace of life. I pray that you consider how to “baptize” your times of leisure this summer. First off, our prayer should not suffer because we are “relaxing,” but could even increase a small amount (10-20 more minutes, perhaps).
There are certainly events here at the parish for the summer: we have Vacation Bible School in the works for little ones, the Alpha program for big ones, and a corn & sausage roast for everyone to wrap it up. When you are away, be sure to look for where you can get to Mass. There may also be some important shrines nearby worth checking out. I would highly recommend visiting a monastery or convent, even just for 30 minutes, to remind us of the quiet beauty of those lives that are so often hidden from our sight.
Spiritual reading is something that can travel with you, as well as media from our parish account on Formed.org. If you can sync your phone to the car (or a bluetooth speaker) then you can use your phone’s data plan to watch movies, listen to talks, or even go through an audio drama of St. Francis.
These are only a few of the many great examples of how to sanctify your leisure so that it is truly a gift to God that you can bring Him at Mass. May the Lord bless your Memorial Day and keep you close to His Heart always!