O happy day!

Myself with the neo-deacon Damian,OP
“We are God’s work of art, created in Christ Jesus to live the good life as from the beginning
he had meant us to live it” (St. Paul to the Ephesians).

On the 15th of March 2015, the Dominican Province in Ireland was in great celebration for the ordination to diaconate of 6 of their brothers:
Br. David McGovern, Br. Damian Polly, Br. Ronan Connolly, Br. Conor McDonough, Br. Eoin Casey and Br. Daragh McNally. In the Catholic Church, the diaconate is the first of three ranks in ordained ministry. Deacons preparing for the priesthood are transitional deacons. As ministers of Word, deacons proclaim the Gospel, preach, and teach in the name of the Church. As ministers of Sacrament, deacons baptise, lead the faithful in prayer, witness marriages, and conduct wake and funeral services. As ministers of Charity, deacons are  leaders in identifying the needs of others,

It was very fitting to have this liturgical celebration on Laetare Sunday, where the introit antiphon calls us to rejoice: “Rejoice, O Jerusalem: and come together all you that love her.” The ordaining prelate was the Most Reverend Diarmuid Martin, who over the past few years has been a frequent visitor to St. Saviour’s Priory for the various ordinations to diaconate and to priesthood.mPart of the liturgy for the ordination entails an ‘examination’ for those who are to be ordained. The questions posed are worth reflecting on:

“Are you willing to be ordained for the Church’s ministry by the laying on of hands and the gift of the Holy Spirit?
Are you resolved to discharge the office of deacon with humility and love in order to assist the bishop and the priests and to serve the people of Christ?
Are you resolved to hold the mystery of the faith with a clear conscience, as the Apostle urges, to proclaim this faith in word and actions as it taught by the Gospel and the Church’s tradition?
Are you resolved to maintain and deepen a spirit of prayer appropriate to your way of life and , in keeping with what is required of you, to celebrate faithfully the liturgy of the hours for the Church and for the whole world?

Are you resolved to shape your way of life always according to the example of Christ, whose body and blood you will give to the people?

In this examination, we get a glimpse of what the deacon is called to be at this point of his journey. It also gives direction for the journey which lies ahead as he continues towards the day of his ordination as a priest. It is all encapsulated in the phrase which the Bishop prays as he presents the Book of the Gospels to the new deacon:“Receive the Gospel of Christ, whose herald you are.Believe what you read, teach what you believe and practice what you teach.” (Rite of Ordination).

With the new decaon Conor
A very poignant part of the rite of ordination is the Litany of the Saints, where the protection of the saints is invoked upon those who are to be ordained. As we call upon these men and women of God to intercede, we are mindful of the journey which they have walked in striving for holiness whilst on earth. It was wonderful to see lots of children present at the celebration and following all that was going on. Who knows what was going through their curious minds as they watched the ceremony! Friends, family and well-wishers joined with the Dominican brothers gathered from the various communities in Ireland to witness these young men move one step further towards being priests for God’s Church. Our sincere best wishes and prayers are with them all and may the Lord continue to raise up vocations, holy men and women to serve Him joyfully!
For more news about the ordination, check out the Dominican website here.