By Sarah Mac Donald - 10 October, 2013
Bishop Denis Nulty of Kildare and Leighlin has said his diocese is being led in new life-giving directions as it prepares to ordain its first permanent deacons this Sunday.
The ordination of seven men as permanent deacons means the Diocese has celebrated the three orders of ordination this year: bishop, priest and deacon.
“It was pointed out to me recently that 2013 has been a remarkable year of ‘firsts’ or new beginnings in our Church and in our diocese,” Bishop Nulty said.
“We have had the election of Pope Francis, our first Pope from Latin America. Closer to home, we had my own ordination as Bishop and the ordination to the priesthood of Fr Terence McGovern, the first in a number of years and now we have our first permanent deacons.”
“So, the Diocese has celebrated the three orders of ordination this year: bishop, priest and deacon.”
He also expressed the hope that there would be a new approach to vocations to the priesthood. “I firmly believe that the Lord is still calling men to the priesthood and that priesthood is a precious ministry which needs to be sustained,” he said in a statement.
Bishop Nulty said he wanted to do all he could to support those who may wish to spend time discerning their calling. I ask you to keep such candidates in your prayers, he said.
“A few words of support and encouragement to a friend or family member can make a deep impression.”
He added that he was delighted to welcome John, Gary, David, Fergal, Joe, Patrick and Jim into ordained ministry in the Diocese of Kildare and Leighlin. “I pray that their ministry will be a great source of blessing and joy for them, their families and the people whom they are called to serve.”
The Permanent Deacons have undertaken an intensive formation programme over the past four years.
The men are: