Ordination update: happy new year, happy new deacons in Arlington

And just as at the beginning of the Church, there are seven.

Details, from the Catholic Herald:

Seven men answered the call to the permanent diaconate and were ordained last Saturday by Arlington Bishop Paul S. Loverde at the Cathedral of St. Thomas More in Arlington. Family, friends and clergy of the diocese joined in welcoming the men to service.

The bishop reinstituted the diaconate formation program in 2005. Last January he ordained 16 men after a hiatus of 20 years. The seven men will join more than 60 deacons serving in the diocese, with another 20 men in the diaconate formation program.

Permanent deacons are ministers of the word and assist the bishop and the priests. At ordination they become part of the Church’s clergy.

They assist and preach at Mass, baptize, and preside at weddings and funerals.

“(This is) another page to what began last year,” the bishop said.

The men — James J. Benisek, Alfred Caporaletti, James C. Hepler, Dennis A. Holley, David M. Maurer, Christopher E. Ryan and Patrick M. Strain — sat with the congregation until they were called by name to the altar by Deacon Sam Taub, deacon of the call, and presented to the bishop by Father Thomas Ferguson, director of diaconate formation.

The bishop asked Father Ferguson if the men were worthy of ordination, and Father Ferguson said they were.

“Relying on the help of the Lord and our Savior Jesus Christ, we choose these men, our brothers, for the order of the diaconate,” said the bishop.

Read the rest. Congratulations, brothers!  Ad multos annos!

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