Ten men, including one from Hamden, will be ordained by Archbishop Leonard P. Blair as permanent deacons on Saturday, June 7, 2014 at the Cathedral of Saint Joseph in Hartford at 11:00 a.m. They will join over 300 active and retired-active deacons who comprise the Permanent Diaconate in the Archdiocese of Hartford.
The 2014 candidate for Permanent Diaconate from Hamden is: Mr. Steven Bilodeau from St. Stephen Parish. He has worked as a Pathologist’s Assistant since 1981 at Yale-New Haven Hospital and is an Adjunct Professor of Graduate Studies at Quinnipiac University. He serves as a lector, Extraordinary Minister of the Eucharist, and catechist at St. Stephen, and is a member of the Knights of Columbus. He and his wife, Lisa, were recipients of the St. Joseph Medal of Appreciation in 2013.
The other candidates are: Mr. Kenneth Bangs from St. Patrick, Collinsville; Mr. Ronnie Bicknell from St. Barnabas, North Haven; Thomas Cabeen, St. Mary, Milford; James McCormack from St. Thomas Apostle, West Hartford; Dean Macchio from St. Ann, Milford; Jacek Muszynski from Sacred Heart, New Britain; José Robles from Most Holy Trinity, Wallingford; Ernest Scrivani from St. Therese, North Haven, and Laurent Yergeau, from St. Ann, Milford.
The public is invited to the Mass.
A permanent deacon is a man who is at least 35 years of age, and dedicates his service in the threefold ministry of the Word, of the liturgy, and of charity. A deacon may be married and raising a family, or celibate. More often than not, he will have another career outside of the Church. He has specific responsibilities in assisting the priest in the celebration of the Eucharist, and has other liturgical responsibilities including: administering the sacrament of baptism, witnessing marriages, bringing Viaticum to the dying and presiding at liturgies of the Word and Communion services in the absence of a priest. He is particularly called to exercise special works of charity and justice, particularly on behalf of the poor.
According to Deacon Robert Pallotti, the Director of the Office for the Diaconate, becoming a permanent deacon requires five years of theological, pastoral and spiritual study.
The Rev. Aidan N. Donahue, Director of Formation for the Diaconate, says the Archdiocese of Hartford is fortunate to have these men serving our communities.
“These men are very committed to their faith. In addition to tending to the spiritual needs of their families, they assist pastors in providing pastoral care to the community at large. These are great, quality men, who are responding to a call from God,” said Father Donahue.
Currently, the archdiocese has eighteen men enrolled in the Permanent Diaconate program who are in various stages of their studies.For more information on the Permanent Diaconate call 860-242-5573.