On Saturday, June 26, the Most Reverend Michael F. Burbidge ordained 15 men to the Diaconate at a Mass celebrated at Sacred Heart Church in Pinehurst. The men completed a five year program of formation and have been assigned to ministry at 14 parishes in the Diocese.
In his homily, Bishop Burbidge told the Deacons that they were “chosen by the Lord and His Church for sacramental service.” The Bishop said that with the imposition of hands and the prayer of consecration, “You will be configured forever to Christ the Servant.” He explained that through ordination, they will be sent as “servants of the Word, at the altar and of charity.”
Bishop Burbidge reminded them that in proclaiming the Word they must do so without compromise, fear or hesitation. As servants of the altar, he said, “It is from this altar that you receive the grace and strength that you need to go forth and bear witness to the Truth and Charity of Christ." And as servants of charity, he told them, like the first seven deacons of the Church, they must go into the community to bring forth the healing and compassionate love of Jesus.
Addressing the wives and children of the Deacons, Bishop Burbidge expressed his deep appreciation for the support they have given during the discernment and formation process. The Bishop also expressed gratitude to Msgr. Michael Clay and Father James Garneau for their leadership and guidance in the formation of the new Deacons.
Above: Bishop Michael F. Burbidge and Father James Garneau, left, Director of the Office of Deacon Formation, and the fifteen newly ordained Deacons in the Diocese of Raleigh.
Above: Newly ordained Deacons at a Mass celebrated by Bishop Michael F. Burbidge at Sacred Heart Church in Pinehurst.
Above: Family, friends, and faithful joining the 15 newly ordained Deacons, Bishop Burbidge, Clergy and Deacons of the Diocese of Raleigh at ordination celebration on June 26.
Deacon assignments effective June 26
Michael Boyd Alig is appointed Deacon at Sacred Heart Cathedral Parish in Raleigh.
Walter Calabrese is appointed Deacon at Annunciation Parish in Havelock Parish in Havelock.
Michel du Sablon is appointed Deacon at Saint Therese Parish in Wilson.
Frederick Melvin Fisher, Jr. is appointed Deacon at Saint Paul Parish in New Bern.
Joseph Pius Piyasiri Gabriel is appointed Deacon at Saint Anthony of Padua Parish in Southern Pines.
Frank Taft Jones, III is appointed Deacon at Saint Ann Parish in Edenton.
Patrick Gerald McIlmoyle is appointed Deacon at Our Lady of the Rosary Parish in Louisburg.
Emilio Mejía is appointed Deacon at Saint Stephen the First Martyr Parish in Sanford.
Vincent Joseph Mescall is appointed Deacon at Saint Patrick Parish in Fayetteville.
Patrick Daniel Pelkey is appointed Deacon at Saint Michael the Archangel Parish in Cary.
Ronald Soriano is appointed Deacon at Saint Mary, Mother of the Church Parish in Garner.
Gary Cole Stemple is appointed Deacon at Saint Ann Parish in Fayetteville.
Juan Alexander Vicent Martínez is appointed Deacon at Saint Francis de Sales Parish in Lumberton.
Bradley EvansWatkins is appointed Deacon at Saint Catherine Siena Parish in Wake Forest.
Mark Alan Westrick is appointed Deacon at Saint Stephen the First Martyr Parish in Sanford.