Saturday, January 31, 2015

Admission to Candidacy

"From this day on, you must cultivate more fully your vocation
 . . . 
trusting in the Lord, we will assist you with our love and prayer" 

On this great festival of Saint John Bosco, my heart rejoices and by the grace of God, Brad and I, along with our sixteen classmates from around the globe, were able to profess our intent before God and His Holy Church our intent to complete preparation for Holy Orders. The beautiful Memorial Mass with the Rite of Admission of Seminarians to Candiday was celebrated by His Excellency, Frederick Campbell, Bishop of Columbus.

This simple, yet profound sep towards priesthood by being admitted as a candidate for holy orders took my breath away, and even brought me, at moments, to tears. In our society where commitment seems to be only temporary, now I was standing: before a bishop, before her priests and deacons, and before her people, and Holy Mother Church was asking me for my own commitment. Over the past four years, I have watched and listened to the Theology II classes before me, state their intent before the Church, and now here I am, with my seventeen brothers, saying, "Yes to the Lord," a moment which I have thought about and prayed about was here and I was declaring my intent to intensify my formation.

Each of us were called by name and presented one by one before the bishop and once in place, Bishop Campbell asked these two questions:

"In response to the Lord's call, do you resolve to complete your preparation so that in due time through Holy Orders you will be prepared to assume ministry within the Church?"  

The Candidates from The Pontifical College Josephinum
"Do you resolve to prepare yourselves in mind and spirit to give faithful service to Christ the Lord and his Body, the Church?"

And it was an extreme heartfelt and intense response to two questions each responding with an "I do" from her sons. The second I do was louder than the first, and my own heart began to rejoice in my intent and then the bishop stated at the end of the rite, "The Church accepts your resolve with joy. May God who have begun the good work in you bring it to fulfillment." I was filled with joy and my emotion rolled through me bringing me to tears [of joy] for today, I, along with my brother, Brad, are one step closer to the altar of God, and for that I am grateful. My heart truly radiated the prophet words, "Here I am, send me!"

To celebrate the occasion all the Gaylord seminarians went out for a little lunch at Der Dutchman Restaurant in Plain City and then they went over the top and treaded Brad and I with a Coconut Creme Pie.

Please pray for us seminarians, and know that the diocese is in our prayers and in our hearts. May our patroness, Our Lady of Mount Carmel, pray for us!

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