The Deacon's Bench

The Deacon's Bench

To serve and protect: from cop to deacon

It’s not unusual for men who are called to police work to feel a similar call to serve others as deacons.

Case in point, from Oregon:

deac.jpgIt was 10 years ago that Martin Larner drove his police motorcycle past St. Joseph Church in Roseburg, saw the cross on top of the building and got an overwhelming feeling that it was time to go back to church.


Larner was raised Catholic but stopped attending mass at age 16, following his father’s death. He then moved on to work for law enforcement in Los Angeles, eventually becoming one of Roseburg’s first motorcycle cops.

He spent 30 years away from the church before having an epiphany to return, which the Sutherlin resident attributes to the Holy Spirit and God’s will. He didn’t have a crisis or hard time as do many people, he said. It was just what was right.

On Saturday, Larner and the church will recognize his calling to serve as he becomes a permanent deacon at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Roseburg and St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church in Sutherlin.

The ceremony is the culmination of more than four years of work and classes within the church, including a master’s program at the University of Portland. Larner will be ordained into a small group, which includes about 60 members from Ashland to Astoria in the regional archdiocese, said Communications Director Bud Bunce. Larner is the first permanent deacon from the Roseburg congregation in its nearly 100 years of service.

“It is more than an honor,” Bunce said. “He is entering into a (lifelong) ministry.” 

Check out the link for much more.  Welcome, brother!  Ad multos annos!

Photo by: Heather Morse 

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