And, as an added bonus, the bishop installed deacon candidates in the Rite of Lector.
The story, from The Catholic News Herald:
Bishop Peter Jugis processed into St. Patrick Cathedral amid a sea of red stoles Aug. 10 to celebrate the Mass for the Affirmation of Ordination Promises by permanent deacons, held annually around the feast of St. Lawrence, deacon and martyr.
This year Bishop Jugis also installed 13 deacon candidates for the permanent diaconate into the Ministry of Lector during Mass. This is the second step on the men’s journey, having gone through the Rite of Candidacy last August.
Joseph Becker, Eduardo Bernal, Carl Brown, Margarito Franco, Charles Hindbaugh, Todd Labonte, John Langlois, Thomas Martin, William Melton Jr., Richard Michaels, Francisco Piña, Herbert Quintanilla and Joseph Smith all presented themselves before Bishop Jugis when their names were called during Mass.
During his homily, Bishop Jugis said, “The Lord gives us a joyous day in witnessing our brother deacons affirm their promises of ordination and our deacon candidates being instituted into the Ministry of Lector. It is a joy to see all of you offering yourselves for the ministry of the Church.”
He explained what the 13 deacon candidates will be responsible for upon becoming lectors.
“You will now have a very special office within the Church in the service of Jesus. There are several different things for which you will be responsible,” he said. “The most important will be the proclamation of the Word of God at Mass. You are placing yourselves and your voices at the service of God to communicate His word, His message of salvation to His people. And through those words of God which you will be pronouncing, God is offering His people spiritual nourishment through His word and forming them – forming their hearts, forming their minds and consciences on His teaching.”
“The Lord gives you the graces you need to fulfill this special ministry,” he said. “But you must also do your part. You must cultivate that grace, through your prayer and through an intimate friendship with Jesus so that you grow in holiness as you exercise your ministry.”
All of us have an obligation to grow in holiness, the bishop emphasized.
“You must deny yourself and follow Him. You must die to self to follow Him. In other words, Jesus must possess the first place in your heart.
“Deny yourself, let people see Christ,” he said. “May everyone see in you a servant who loves and is faithful to the Lord.”