Bishop Nelson Perez will ordain four men as permanent deacons during a Mass at 10 a.m. May 4 in the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist in downtown Cleveland.
The Mass will be streamed live on the diocesan website.
The four men who will be ordained are Christopher DePenti, husband of Anne Marie, and a parishioner at St. Columbkille, Parma; Giovanni Grazia, husband of Suzanne, and a parishioner at Divine Word in Kirtland; Matthew Harley, husband of Mary, and a parishioner at St. Ambrose in Brunswick; and Thomas Shetina, husband of Lee, and a parishioner at St. John Vianney in Mentor.
They are finishing five years of preparation, which includes a year of aspirancy and four years of formation.
As permanent deacons, they will be assigned to parishes within the diocese to assist the bishop and priests. Their duties will include assisting at the Eucharist, distributing Holy Communion, witnessing and blessing marriages, proclaiming the Gospel and preaching, presiding at funerals and engaging in ministries of charity.
This year is the 51st anniversary of the 1968 approval by St. Pope Paul VI for the bishops of the United States to renew the permanent diaconate as an active, permanent order of ministry.
The deacons -- who have a three-fold ministry of word, altar and charity -- will be ordained by the bishop during the liturgy. They are charged with performing works of charity. Their ministry is one of service.