Photo: Ken Steinhardt/Orange County Register
From the Orange County Catholic:
With the hymn “One in Christ” as a musical backdrop, Bishop Kevin W. Vann entered St. Columban Church in Garden Grove earlier this morning to ordain 15 new permanent deacons to serve in the Diocese of Orange. (Click here for the complete list.)
“We are blessed to welcome so many new deacons into the permanent diaconate within our diocese,” Bishop Vann said in a statement prior to the ordination. “These unique individuals will assist in serving the ever growing and important needs of our flock, with particular focus on the acute needs of the poor and marginalized in our community,”
The diaconate is the first of three ranks in ordained ministry. Deacons preparing for the priesthood are transitional deacons, while those not planning to be ordained priests are permanent deacons. Today’s ordination brought the number of active permanent deacons in the diocese to 120.
A deacon may assist and preach during the liturgy and may officiate at baptisms, marriages, funeral services, and various community devotions. Married men may be ordained permanent deacons and single men may be ordained with a commitment to celibacy. Thirteen of the new deacons, who range in age from 42 to 66, are married. All are able to continue their current employment.
The formal formation process for all 15 candidates began in 2008—a very important commonality. But the paths that carried them to formation, and now to ordination, varied widely.
Read the rest. Congratulations, brothers, and welcome! Ad multos annos!