By: Steven Smith
On Saturday 31st September, 11 am at St Mary’s Cathedral.
Jithin Anto, Confidence Masvosva and Paul Zaher received the gift of Ordination to the Diaconate by the laying upon of hands by Bishop Patrick O'Regan. A big moment for the Diocese of Sale who showed up in force, as the Cathedral was full with the family members and friends of the newly ordained Deacons and many Parishioners of the diocese to welcome the three newly ordained transitional Deacons. It seemed as if Sale itself welcomed all those who came as they were greeted by a beautiful warm day, without a cloud in sight. I was extremely lucky to have had the opportunity to serve for the Mass, as I watched Jithin, Confidence and Paul approach the sanctuary it was hard not to see the joy on the faces of those in the pews and the three to be ordained. The Rector of Corpus Christi Seminary, Fr Denis Stanley presented those to be ordained to the Bishop and upon being asked declared the three ‘worthy.’ The Bishop having chosen the three for ordination indicated for the people to show their consent and a large round of applause could be heard.
With my own ordination in mind, I took time to reflect on what it meant to be worthy. None of us are truly worthy, it is impossible to earn or to deserve ordination. This is not to say that the three newly ordained deacons haven’t worked hard to be able to serve the people of God to their fullest abilities, but at the very core, ordination is a call from God which is gifted upon those who receive it. It was a gift that was received with great joy, great trust, and even greater humility, this humility was highlighted for me by the moment where Jithin, Confidence, and Paul lay prostrate on the sanctuary before the altar. During this time, a time of great humility, the litany of the saints was sung and we, all those present in the Mass asked for the intercession of the saints, all the holy men, and women. This was a blessed moment where there is recognition of the full responsibility which is contained within the gift of ordination given by God and the importance of prayer.
Afterward, a reception was held in the school hall, it was clear to any there how excited the community was to welcome their new deacons. It is clear that the new deacons will not be alone in their ministry, but will be supported by the faithful.
And so let us remember those recently ordained in our prayers as we pray that they will be good servants for the faithful as they live out the gift they have received today.
Photos: Edward Jonas Ibarra