Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Michael Clark

7/10/2014 (6 months ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Priests have a deep call to serve their Creator and their fellow man.

Each Spring the Catholic dioceses and Archdioceses across the nation have the distinct pleasure to celebrate the men who have answered the call of the Lord as priests. No matter how any priests I have talked to over the years, I don't think I will every truly understand the depth of this call to serve their Creator and their fellow man in this sacred position. Further, I don't think I will truly understand the emotions that each man experiences through on his specific ordination day. 

Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in downtown Denver.

Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in downtown Denver.

Highlights

By Michael Clark

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

7/10/2014 (6 months ago)

Published in Blog

Keywords: ordination, priest, God, Lord, calling, cathedral, Catholic,


DENVER, CO - I had the honor of attending the ordination of a friend here in Denver, attending both his ordination Mass and his first Mass as a new priest. In those two days I witnessed an amazing array of what our church has to offer.

The ordination Mass was held at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in downtown Denver and started very similar to any other Mass with a processional. This processional, however, was a bit longer than the average Sunday Mass. A variety of men marched down the center aisle of the cathedral starting with the Knights of Columbus with their customary swords, capes and feathered chapeaus. Next came men from the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem, who can trace the roots of their order back Duke Godfrey of Bouillon and the First Crusade. Behind them, a multitude of priests processed, representing not only teachers and mentors but also friends. At the end came the four ordinandi, their vesting clergy, and Archbishop Samuel Aquila.

The Cathedral is a cavernous church complete with the traditional organ and choir loft. Their voices were majestic. As one of the ordinandi was originally from Brazil, we also had the pleasure of guitar players singing in Portuguese. Of course, while beautiful, nothing could top seeing the four men ordained as priests. For me, it seemed as if the whole cathedral was in silent when each one knelt before the Archbishop as he laid his hands on them, continuing the Apostolic succession that began all those centuries ago. What truly brought tears to my eyes was eyeing each of these new priests prayed over, hugged and blessed by all of their now brother priests. One by one they embraced their new brothers as the four men were now part of a fraternity that I doubt us lay people can truly understand. The years of education, prayer, meditation, and soul-searching all came to fruition as they stood before the altar of the Lord.

Inside the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in downtown Denver.


Archbishop Aquila also had wise words for the new priests telling them their formation was not done with Holy Orders and that they should keep their eyes fixed on the Good Shepherd. He admonished them that there is nothing worse than an angry priest because that priest does not know Jesus. 
However, when they experience Jesus, they will know joy. As a sinner, I was glad that Archbishop Aquila also told them to never tire of being merciful, especially in Confession. Wise words indeed.

If this story ended here, it would be a marvelous tale, but it does not. Each of these new priests had their own reception afterwards, a time to celebrate with family and friends. The invitation we received had a description on it stating that his reception would be much like a wedding reception complete with dinner and the opportunity to embarrass him. Personally, I enjoyed seeing a childhood photo of him and his twin brother dressed in their Batman and Superman Halloween costumes.
 
Perhaps even more special was the next day when each new priest celebrated his first Mass. Our friend's Mass was on the opposite side of Denver in Commerce City, at Our Lady Mother of the Church parish where he spent time during his formation.

What a great name for a parish by the way. And as awesome as the Ordination Mass was the previous day, his first Mass showcased the breadth of the Catholic Church. The procession in some ways mirrored the magnificent Ordination procession from the Cathedral but with much more flair and contrast. The parish has four Masses every Sunday: two in English and two in Spanish. That being said, the procession started with parishioners dressed in traditional Aztec costumes complete with large drums that boomed through the church.

My one year old daughter was mesmerized by the bright colored feathers of the costumes but was a little scared of the loud drums. The procession of priests was shorter, only about 20 or so, close friends and mentors. The Knights of Columbus were there in full regalia. The parish also has a handbell choir whose delicate ringing contrasted the booming Aztec drums.

We also were treated to Gregorian chants, incense, and the traditional organ and piano music one normally encounters at a Sunday Mass. Also, did I mention that the pastor of this bilingual parish on the northeast side of Denver is from Krakow, Poland? Other than the Latin rite, I'm not sure what else could have been included. This mass was a sampling of what our church has to offer, a wonderful mixture of culture, traditions and liturgy
.
And there lies the extra gift of this ordination weekend: the opportunity to experience a wide range of Catholicism. Our church is ancient, dating back to the original Apostles and the time of Jesus. It's seen its share of persecution, heresy, political turmoil, changing nations, Ecumenical Councils, churches that range from someone's house to grand cathedrals, Gregorian chants, burning incense, the Great Schism, Crusades, Inquisitions, gifts of the Holy Spirit, Marian apparitions, a host of Saints and an expansion of the Great Commission around the world. We are 1.2 billion strong and have incorporated a multitude of cultures and peoples into the church. My experience during this ordination weekend is proof of that. If you haven't been to an ordination, I highly recommend attending one.

Usually dioceses hold them in either May or June. If you are able, adopt a seminarian. These men who become priests travel a long and arduous road before tending their flocks. Support them any way you can, be it prayer, money, or simply inviting them over to dinner. If your diocese doesn't have its own seminary, check out other parishes. Find a Byzantine rite parish and experience the ancient Divine Liturgy. Don't be afraid of a Latin Mass parish. They'll have a translation for you. The point is we Catholics have a rich and wide history that continues to add new ways to encounter and praise the Lord. Branch out and see for yourself.

On a local note, congratulations again to Fathers Warli, Joseph, Nathan and Jason.

Blessings

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for January 2015
General Intention:
That those from diverse religious traditions and all people of good will may work together for peace.
Missionary Intention: That in this year dedicated to consecrated life, religious men and women may rediscover the joy of following Christ and strive to serve the poor with zeal.



Comments


More Blog

Think Before You Speak and Always Choose Better Words

Image of Think before you speak - you might regret your words.

By Jackie Stammen

A thought pops into my mind. Said thought exits my mouth. I often find myself word vomiting as such. Just because a thought enters my mind, does not mean that it needs to exit my mouth. Filter, Jackie, filter. I've become acutely aware that I often speak too much. I ... continue reading


Exposing Couples' Genuine Fears in Family Planning

Image of It's amazing how fear has the potential to overpower in some cases or to protect in others.

By Tara Brelinsky

Quite often the women have been controlling their cycles with hormonal birth control or contraceptive devices. These 'outside forces' have led to the perception that fertility, or at least its suppression, is the responsibility of some 'thing' not the individual ... continue reading


The Nitty Gritty on Birth Control

Image of This 4th installment in the post series discussing womanhood and the need to rethink birth control, addresses the ramifications of contraceptives on the body and the healthy alternatives to family planning.

By Tara Brelinsky

From sensitivities to allergies and everything in between, there's an increased awareness of how what we put into our bodies affects our well-being. Labels contain ingredient lists and restaurants highlight low calorie menu items to aid consumers.This 4th ... continue reading


The Difference Between Two Generations

Image of Simple conversation with friends and family brings joy.

By Jackie Stammen

Always a welcoming feeling, I plopped down on the living room couch at my grandparent's house while I was in Ohio for Thanksgiving this past November. A happy little fire warmed the room and expanded the smile on my face. There are few things I love more on a cold day ... continue reading


Why I Hate the March for Life: But Why I Must Continue to Put Feet on the Ground Watch

Image of for 42 years, faithful men, women and children have come forth to speak with unrestrained lips, giving testimony with footsteps, to the glory of God and His creations, born and unborn. And though we may tire of the task, feel un-welcomed, discouraged or overwhelmed we must and will continue to carry our signs, hold fast to our convictions and march forward until the day when every life matters according to the law and in every heart.

By by Tara K. E. Brelinsky

My husband asked me just last week how it is that I can still maintain a sense of shock and naivete whenever events like the Republicans' refusal to stand by their public convictions occur. I pointed out that hope causes me to invest in goodness, to believe that ... continue reading


There is a Sensitive Heart in Dire Need of Love Behind Every Cold, Strong Facade

Image of We all long to love and be loved.

By Jackie Stammen

The heart has basic needs. Not just my heart, but all hearts. As humans we often desire many things, but I've become incredibly aware of the root of all desires. The most simplistic way to express the deepest desire of each person is that we all long to love and be ... continue reading


Keeping You In The Dark: How Big Pharma Profits From Ignorance

Image of Don't be in the dark, do your research on all medications that your doctor prescribes. Be aware of the side effects.

By by Tara K. E. Brelinsky

'Knowledge is Power' was a theme song lyric in one of my favorite childhood programs. Indeed, knowledge is a powerful tool and with it we can make right choices. Unfortunately, there's not much education going on in the gynecologist's office. And I'd even boldly ... continue reading


Patience is United With Love

Image of Marriage is a Sacrament based in love and commitment.

By Jackie Stammen

'Patience cannot be proved in any way other than suffering, and patience is united with love.'From 'Little Talks With God' by St. Catherine of Siena NASHVILLE, TN - In essence, love cannot be proved without patience or suffering. In today's world it's easy to ... continue reading


Pope Francis Said What? On Rabbits and Responsibility

Image of Pope Francis on the Plane

By Tara Brelinsky

Pope Francis' recent rabbit comment has been splashed across the headlines. There are accusations, questions, criticisms and explanations. Admittedly, as a mama of a big brood who has endured more than a couple of comments (plus the aforementioned serenade) and ... continue reading


The Female Fertility Cycle Demystified

Image of Some women begin experiencing symptoms from the moment the fertilized egg implants in the uterus, whereas others may not notice any changes until well after the first month.

By by Tara K. E. Brelinsky

In part 1 of this post series, I covered how woman needs to reclaim her wholeness. Society has fractured woman into a collection of parts and in doing so it has allowed men to say in effect, I want you darling, but not your fill-in-the-blank.  From hair dye ... continue reading


All Blog News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Hebrews 10:11-18
11 Every priest stands at his duties every day, ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 110:1, 2, 3, 4
1 [Of David Psalm] Yahweh declared to my Lord, 'Take ... Read More

Gospel, Mark 4:1-20
1 Again he began to teach them by the lakeside, but ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for January 28th, 2015 Image

St. Thomas Aquinas
January 28: St. Thomas Aquinas, priest and doctor of the Church, patron of ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter