Sorry to be out of the loop the last week. I was actually in Columbus, OH. I was there to visit my Alma Mater, the Pontifical College Josephinum. I would like to thank my diocesan brothers who invited me to take them all out for dinner, which I was glad to do. Further, I was there to concelebrate the Mass of Ordination for Matthew and Terrance Coonan. These brothers were ordained as Deacons for our Diocese of Fort Wayne South Bend. I count it a pure grace to have been there. What a beautiful ceremony. I especially enjoyed the beautiful Waczek memorial Pipe organ played by the masterful John Hammond. This organ was installed 2 years ago almost to the day. I remember the installation well because it was completed and played for the first time during my own deaconate ordination 2 years ago. I had forgotten just how great an instrument it really is.
Please pray for these two new deacons. They will be assigned to some parish this summer where they will begin their ordained ministry. Deacons can baptize, preside at funerals or weddings, read the gospel, give homilies, preach, and especially work with the poor. Anyone who encounters these two newly ordained deacons will see all of these being put into practice.
On a personal note, I have to say I was so happy to have been there for their ordination. In many ways I got to see these two young men "grow up" into the deacons they are and the priests they will become. I was in the seminary the whole time they were. I still remember the first time I met Matt Coonan (I think my head is still spinning). Matt is a rare individual, I don't think I have met a more driven person. The first time I met Tink he still had shoulder length hair and was going to school. It has truly been a joy to see them as they have embraced seminary formation. I just wish they were somewhat athletic. (That is a joke, they run circles around me).
God bless Matt and Tink: ad multos annos.