Aleteia logoAleteia logo
Aleteia
Tuesday 11 May |
Saint of the Day: St. Ignatius of Laconi

Bishop: Deacons are ‘a great blessing to our diocese’

Deacon Greg Kandra - published on 05/18/17

As Springfield, Massachusetts prepares to ordain nine new deacons this weekend, The Springfield Republican newspaper looks at how this vocation has grown and the impact it is having in the local church:

The ordination of nine permanent deacons this weekend, four of whom are Spanish speaking – a need in some diocesan parishes – and the majority married, will bring to 86 the number of active permanent deacons in the diocese where about 108 priests actively serve in parish ministry throughout four counties, sometimes ministering to one parish’s multiple worship sites alone and sometimes assisted by retired priests who number about 40. While stressing deacons and priests have “their unique roles and responsibilities in the church,” Bishop Mitchell Rozanski called the permanent diaconate a “great blessing to our diocese,” in part for its “helping priests by providing assistance in pastoral ministry in many parishes.” The position of permanent deacon, which has generally brought a more ethnically mixed group into ordained ministry in the Church across the country, is not a paid one in this diocese. Parishes in this diocese continue to be headed by a priest, although elsewhere in the country the pastoral care of parishes has been assigned to deacons and full-time deacons as well as some part-time deacons are paid. Deacons here are asked to give about 12 to 15 hours of weekly service. “We can’t consecrate the Eucharist; we can’t anoint the sick and we can’t absolve your sins,” said [Deacon Leo] Coughlin, in reference to sacramental work only performed by priests. “But we can perform weddings, do baptisms and serve at funerals.” …In his statement about the permanent diaconate, Rozanski called it “especially helpful in light of fewer priests and religious available to staff our parishes,” – the number of active priests has dropped by about three dozen in the last two years in a diocese that has continued to close or merge parishes – but said it “isn’t just about that important work.”

Read on.

I had the privilege of meeting Bishop Rozanski a couple years ago, at the installation of the Order of the Holy Sepulchre in Portland, Maine. We two Maryland boys had a lot to talk about. He’s great people.

Top photo: Diocese of Springfield

Support Aleteia!

If you’re reading this article, it’s thanks to the generosity of people like you, who have made Aleteia possible.

Here are some numbers:

  • 20 million users around the world read Aleteia.org every month
  • Aleteia is published every day in seven languages: English, French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, and Slovenian
  • Each month, readers view more than 50 million pages
  • Nearly 4 million people follow Aleteia on social media
  • Each month, we publish 2,450 articles and around 40 videos
  • We have 60 full time staff and approximately 400 collaborators (writers, translators, photographers, etc.)

As you can imagine, these numbers represent a lot of work. We need you.

Support Aleteia with as little as $1. It only takes a minute. Thank you!

Daily prayer
And today we celebrate...




Top 10
1
Eric Clapton, Luciano Pavarotti, East London Gospel Choir
J-P Mauro
Hear Clapton and Pavarotti sing a prayer to the “Holy Mothe...
2
SAINTS
Meg Hunter-Kilmer
Saints to help if Mother’s Day is hard
3
MOTHER OF ASIA - TOWER OF PEACE
J-P Mauro
Philippines finishes construction of largest Marian statue in the...
4
MOTHER SHORT FILM
Zoe Romanowsky
Moving 1-minute film about motherhood will touch your heart
5
FIRST LOOK
Sarah Robsdottir
Dad’s priceless reaction to newborn goes viral
6
PRAY
Philip Kosloski
3 Signs of a spiritual attack on your soul
7
I.Media for Aleteia
These 30 shrines will lead the Rosary Relay for end of the pandem...
See More