The Deacon's Bench

Continuing its tradition, the Archdiocese of Los Angeles has announced the new “deacon couples” who will be serving parishes upon the ordination of the new deacons this weekend:

Cardinal Roger Mahony will ordain 14 men to the Sacred Order of Deacon on June 12 at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels.

Those to be ordained and their wives — known as the John 23rd formation class — have undergone a five-year period of formation in preparation for the ministry. They will be assigned to their home parishes.

A deacon is an ordained minister who takes the spirit and message of Jesus to the marketplace. He has been called to serve others, especially the poor – reaching out to the sick, those in prison, the homeless. A deacon proclaims the Gospel, preaches and conducts baptisms, weddings and funerals.

Deacons’ wives, though not ordained, become an integral part of the diaconate community by participating in the formation program and being active members of the deacon community of the archdiocese, working with their husbands or in their own ministries.

Lumen Gentium, the Dogmatic Constitution on the Church (1964), notes that deacons, strengthened by sacramental grace, “are dedicated to the people of God, in communion with the bishop and his presbyterate, in the service of the liturgy, of the word and of charity…. Dedicated to works of charity and functions of administration, deacons should recall the admonition of St. Polycarp: ‘Let them be merciful, and zealous, and let them walk according to the truth for the Lord, who became the servant of all'” (n. 29).

There are biographies of the couples and more information at the link.

Meantime, congratulations and blessings to the men and their wives!

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