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Five seminarians instituted into ministry of lector

News of the Diocese

October 31, 2023

Five seminarians instituted into ministry of lector
Five seminarians instituted into ministry of lector
Five seminarians instituted into ministry of lector
Five seminarians instituted into ministry of lector
Five seminarians instituted into ministry of lector
Five seminarians instituted into ministry of lector
Five seminarians instituted into ministry of lector
Five seminarians instituted into ministry of lector

“Tonight, you will be given a special office – a unique responsibility – within the Christian community to be bearers of God’s word. Yes, you will proclaim God’s word in the liturgical assembly, but you will be more than just glorified professional readers. Likewise, being instituted in the ministry of lector is more than just another step propelling you, God willing, to sacramental ordination,” Auxiliary Bishop Michael Woost told the five seminarians who were instituted into the ministry of lector.

The liturgy was celebrated on Oct. 20 in Sacred Heart Chapel at the Center for Pastoral Leadership in Wickliffe. The candidates are students at Saint Mary Seminary and Graduate School of Theology.

Those instituted for the Diocese of Cleveland were Charles Cairnie, St. Mary of the Immaculate Conception Parish, Wooster; Noah Furin, St. Ladislas Parish, Westlake; Jeremy Gaughler, St. Mary of the Falls Parish, Olmsted Falls; and Jeremy Shafer, St. Mary Parish, Berea. Arthur Bodenschatz of St. Paul Paris in North Canton was instituted for the Diocese of Youngstown.

(See photo gallery above.)

The bishop told them that being a lector is a ministry.

“It is an offering of yourselves in the service of the faith, rooted in God’s word and assisting in a vital part of the Church’s mission. This is why the liturgical documents indicate that the instituted lector in not only responsible for proclaiming God’s word, but also responsible for evangelizing those who have not yet received God’s word, catechizing children and adults who have, preparing the faithful to receive the sacraments worthily and assisting women and men to encounter the Father, Son, and Spirit so as to share in the very life of the Trinity. Christ and his Church impose an awesome responsibility on the instituted lector,” he said, adding, “You are called to do what Jesus did.”

The bishop noted that in the Gospel chosen for the liturgy, Jesus ministered as a lector.

“The Word Made Flesh proclaims the word to be enfleshed in the lives of the community members. Both Incarnate Word and Word proclaimed are an encounter with God’s saving presence, a divine word of promise fulfilled amid the gathered liturgical assembly,” he said.

The bishop told the five men being instituted as lectors that the Scripture passage was being fulfilled because they are called to do what Jesus did. “You are called to enflesh, incarnate in your own lives the Incarnate Word who is Jesus. His mission, given to you in baptism, tonight is refined and reproduced a little more specifically as you respond to the Church’s call to offer yourselves as ministers of God’s word.”

Bishop Woost told the men, “You cannot do this on your own – to be bearers of God’s word and ministers of the divine encounter. Therefore, in a few moments, I will ask this community of faith to pray for you – to pray that God will bless you, that you will be faithful to the ministry entrusted to you, that you will proclaim Christ with the witness of your lives and so, give glory to God.”

He reminded them they must meditate on the word constantly, growing in love with the Scriptures so that through, which and in them Christ will be encountered.

“This is what the Church expects of you. This is what we hope from you,” he said, noting again that they cannot do this without relying on God’s grace and activity in their lives.

“Rejoicing in the Lord must be your strength. Rejoice then that Christ has called you through his Church to this ministry of lector. Rejoice to become uniquely the bearers of the word. Rejoice that you will be instruments of the encounter between God and his people in the service of faith. Rejoice to wrestle with the Word, to engage in divine reading for the sake of your own heart’s transformation.”

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