Monday, June 02, 2014

Tim's Ordination to the Transitional Deaconate

My youngest brother was ordained a deacon yesterday, which is a step on his path to the priesthood in the Catholic Church.  It was exciting to get to help with the festivities surrounding it and to attend the ordination Mass as well as his first Mass as a deacon, where he read the gospel and preached the homily.  So here are lots of photos from the weekend!

First, some photos from the ordination itself, which was held at 10:30am at the Cathedral of Christ the King near downtown Atlanta...

Before the Mass began:

too bad they didn't use this beautiful organ - Tim says they use it for ordinations to the priesthood, so we'll get to hear that next year!

(Contrary to what early Nintendo players may assume, the arrows on the floor do not propel you faster toward the altar like they do in ExciteBike...)

In the narthex before the Mass began... I caught these photos as I was walking Lucy around before it started.  Four men were ordained to the transitional deaconate in Atlanta this weekend.

praying together

The Mass began with all the deacons and priests and the four candidates processing into the church and Archbishop Gregory incensing the altar.  The thurible is huge - I bet we could stuff Lucy inside it, that's how large it is, ha ha.

A sweet photo of Uncle Stephen with Cecilia standing on the pew so she could see

Tim stood next to our parents after processing in for the Liturgy of the Word before being called forward to be ordained

Jack Knight, an Atlanta seminarian, did one of the readings - we had met him the evening before when he and several other seminarians and priests came over to my parents' house for dinner, and Lucy decided she had a new favorite seminarian!  Sorry, Uncle Tim!

Being called forward

You can see the two auxiliary bishops of our archdiocese in the background here.  The one on the left used to be one of our parish priests at St. Jude, where our family attended and my parents still attend Mass.

Here is a view of where Tim sat the rest of the time until he assisted at the altar as a new deacon... the four candidates sat just inside the altar rail, two on each side.  Archbishop Gregory is giving the homily here.  Chris recorded it, and I bet it will be on Youtube soon - I will have to link to it here!

Somebody who is a bigger camera nerd than me took precedence and kept getting in the edges of my shots

prostration before the altar - a sign of reverence

Tim is the one with the brown-soled shoes.  Our mom asked him why he didn't write "Hi, Mom!" on them, ha ha.

The laying on of hands

Monsignor Fennessey, the pastor of St. Jude Church, helps Tim put on his new vestments

Receiving the Book of the Gospels (at which point Stephen said, "Hey, he doesn't get to keep it?" when he noticed the Archbishop used the same book for each new deacon and then took it back, ha)

Being welcomed as a new deacon by Archbishop Gregory...

...and his friend Brian, a fellow seminarian at the Josephinum who had recently been ordained to the deaconate in his own diocese.  It is neat to see the other seminarians supporting each other by attending each other's ordinations!

My parents, as well as family members of the other new deacons, brought the gifts forward to the Archbishop.  my dad, of course, carried the wine. ;)

Tim and one of the other new deacons were chosen to assist at the altar in their new role as deacons... Tim was chosen because two of them said they were too nervous, ha.  I guess after you have served Mass for the Pope in St. Peter's Basillica, it's no problem to let them pick you!

Censing the bishops... I was informed that it is not referred to as "incensing the bishops" because you are not trying to get them riled up and angry, ha ha.

Censing the people

assisting with the consecration

first photo after Mass - Deacon Tim with goddaughter Cecilia

There was a little reception there at the cathedral... we mingled around before heading to St. Jude where we had set up a lunch reception for Tim

Deacon Tim with friends Deacon Harry and Deacon Brian, two of his friends from the seminary.  And my left hand.

Tim with other Deacon Brian, Deacon Harry, Deacon Brian, and Father Oxley, a priest from their seminary, the Josephinum

with our parents

I managed to get all the Josephinum attendees together: this one includes Father Becket and almost-deacon Casey (Diocese of Charlotte will ordain him soon)

At the lunch reception at St. Jude:

table for photo board, guest book, gifts and cards, and "save the date" cards for next year's ordination to the priesthood

Crystal, my brother Mike's wife, made the pretty bow on this basket to match our vase centerpieces

the many faces of Cecilia

the cake - there were two of these from Costco

Tim arrives, everyone claps...

...and his fellow seminarians goad him into giving a speech.  I guess he would have spoken anyway.  He led us in the blessing before everyone started toward the buffet line for barbeque.

Lucy wanted to help

The real reason Catholics have so many kids: to have somebody to retrieve beers for them.  I kid, I joke!  It is simply one of children's many useful functions. ;)

as I was assembling Tim's photo board the night before, he asked, "Wait, don't you usually make these for family member's funerals??"  It's true; I have been recruited to do this at family funerals since 1993.

The centerpieces.  We made about 20 of these for the reception.  My mom asked me for ideas, and I said to get some mason jars and burlap and lace and twine and just throw it together; I had seen something along those lines in a picture somewhere.  So she asked me to find some photos online and email them to her.  I did... and then she showed them to Crystal, who helped her pick out supplies and then put together a prototype.  It was perfect - I loved that I could just list off some random stuff and they could take that and make it look good!  Each vase ended up a bit different... one photo I found online had little charms tied on to the jars, so I told my mom that maybe saint medals would be a neat addition.  She got a bunch of St. Jude medals to use.  She also decided to use them as vases with daisies rather than put candles in them, which had been my original idea.

cake time - Caroline loved running around with a tray, serving cake to all the guests!  Looks like I don't have a photo of that.

Back at the house, everyone gets more casual and we continue the celebrating.  Lucy made another friend, Brian, who read her a few books.  I love when our kids get to hang around other seminarians, deacons, priests... it is just a normal part of life for them and I hope it continues to be so.  They have many role models of their faith around them, and they also get to see that clergy are "real people," too.  Caroline had all Tim's classmates from the Josephinum playing "I'm thinking of an animal" and "I'm thinking of a saint" with her.  She was personally offended when Deacon Brian guessed one of her more difficult animals, a capybara, in only three questions (Does it have fur?  Can it swim?  Is it a capybara?), and she was appalled that none of them, not even Father Oxley, had ever heard of St. Zita.  All their combined years of religious studies and they are outsmarted by a 9 year old, ha ha. ;)

   Caroline and Cecilia even got Brian to help them spy on Tim and report back to them so they could compile a report of his doings, which Caroline presented to us on Sunday:

I told Tim that I needed to thank his friends for so sweetly putting up with my children annoying them, and Tim said, "No, they think it's great, really!"  That they gladly would play "I'm thinking of an animal/saint" with them is pretty cool... it will just reinforce to them the idea that priests aren't some distant holier-than-thou people, but that they really have personalities and are just a part of normal life!  So I am grateful that my kids have the opportunity to be around members of the clergy in both formal and informal settings.

I love how angry Caroline looks at Uncle Stephen as she throws the football to him...

Lots of post-ordination fun was had by all... football, watching the dog puke, beers on the deck, eating leftover barbeque, listening to the distant thunder all evening... good times.  The kids all went to bed early that night after such a long day - except Caroline, who stayed up a little bit watching tv until about 9:00.

The next morning - Tim's first Mass as a deacon, at which he proclaimed the Gospel and preached his first-ever homily:

Reading the Gospel - he chanted it, actually, since it was a special occasion.  Afterward, Caroline looked up at me and I said, "He's not going to chant his homily," to which she replied, "Good!"

Our parents and Tim's godparents brought up the gifts

the consecration

Tim distributes the Precious Blood

Tim's fellow deacons and Father Becket from the seminary assisted with distribution of communion as well.  No extraordinary ministers were needed because of all the help they already had there on the altar.

At the end of Mass t St. Jude's, they give a chalice to a family in the parish who has volunteered to keep it in their home for a week as a reminder to pray for more vocations to the priesthood.  Tim presented it to one of the altar boys and his parents.

Tim with his godparents, the Heusingers... the parish held a small reception with muffins and scones and drinks and such right after the Mass.

"Uncle Deacon" with Lucy

Tim with his Josephinum posse

Congratulations to Tim as well as the other three men ordained to the transitional deaconate, and to all our new deacons and priests during this season of the liturgical year.  If this year was this much fun, just think what next year will be like when he is ordained as a priest!  We love you, Timmy! :)

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