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Seven transitional deacons ordained by Bishop Woost in joyful, hope-filled liturgy

News of the Diocese

April 18, 2024

Seven transitional deacons ordained by Bishop Woost in joyful, hope-filled liturgy
Seven transitional deacons ordained by Bishop Woost in joyful, hope-filled liturgy
Seven transitional deacons ordained by Bishop Woost in joyful, hope-filled liturgy
Seven transitional deacons ordained by Bishop Woost in joyful, hope-filled liturgy
Seven transitional deacons ordained by Bishop Woost in joyful, hope-filled liturgy
Seven transitional deacons ordained by Bishop Woost in joyful, hope-filled liturgy
Seven transitional deacons ordained by Bishop Woost in joyful, hope-filled liturgy
Seven transitional deacons ordained by Bishop Woost in joyful, hope-filled liturgy
Seven transitional deacons ordained by Bishop Woost in joyful, hope-filled liturgy
Seven transitional deacons ordained by Bishop Woost in joyful, hope-filled liturgy
Seven transitional deacons ordained by Bishop Woost in joyful, hope-filled liturgy
Seven transitional deacons ordained by Bishop Woost in joyful, hope-filled liturgy
Seven transitional deacons ordained by Bishop Woost in joyful, hope-filled liturgy
Seven transitional deacons ordained by Bishop Woost in joyful, hope-filled liturgy
Seven transitional deacons ordained by Bishop Woost in joyful, hope-filled liturgy
Seven transitional deacons ordained by Bishop Woost in joyful, hope-filled liturgy
Seven transitional deacons ordained by Bishop Woost in joyful, hope-filled liturgy
Seven transitional deacons ordained by Bishop Woost in joyful, hope-filled liturgy
Seven transitional deacons ordained by Bishop Woost in joyful, hope-filled liturgy
Seven transitional deacons ordained by Bishop Woost in joyful, hope-filled liturgy
Seven transitional deacons ordained by Bishop Woost in joyful, hope-filled liturgy
Seven transitional deacons ordained by Bishop Woost in joyful, hope-filled liturgy
Seven transitional deacons ordained by Bishop Woost in joyful, hope-filled liturgy
Seven transitional deacons ordained by Bishop Woost in joyful, hope-filled liturgy

“We have great hopes for ourselves and the seminarians entrusted to our care,” said Auxiliary Bishop Michael Woost during the April 13 ordination Mass for the diocese’s seven new transitional deacons. The liturgy took place in the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist and in the presence of Bishop Edward Malesic. Concelebrants included the new deacons’ pastors, seminary and diocesan officials. In addition to the families and friends of the newly ordained, many priests and deacons, fellow seminarians and seminary faculty members also attended the celebration.

“We hope to impart knowledge and wisdom. We hope to share our pastoral experience and to expand their sense of what it means to be Church. We hope to invite them into a deep encounter with the Trinity and to embrace the grace of conversion in all its forms. We hope that they will see themselves as beloved sons of God and that they will acquire the heart of a shepherd, conformed to Jesus, the Good Shepherd,” Bishop Woost said.

(See photo gallery above.)

“We hope that they will be authentic leaders of prayer and holy spiritual guides. We hope especially that they will be loving, compassionate and humble servants of God’s holy people. We hope they will be willing to lay down their lives – not just on this cathedral floor – but daily in their ministry, being Christ for others and seeing Christ in other. We have great hopes for you,” he added.

The seven new deacons, their parent, home parishes and diaconate assignments are:

● Ryan Michael Arto, son of Gary and Jeanine Arto of Akron, St. Francis de Sales Parish, Akron was assigned to Divine Word Parish, Kirtland.

● Christopher Lawrence Cotone, son of Norman and Donnalee Cotone of Parma Heights, St. John Bosco Parish, Parma Heights, was assigned to St. Joseph Parish, Avon Lake.

● James Jonathon Hawkins, son of James and Carolyn Hawkins of Wadsworth, Sacred Heart of Jesus Parish, Wadsworth, was assigned to St. Hilary Parish, Fairlawn.

● Jeffrey Le Vance Lindholm, son of Bradley and Shelley Lindholm of Westlake, St. Raphael Parish, Bay Village, was assigned to Sacred Heart Chapel, Lorain.

● James Alexander Parisi, son of Dr. Edward and Christine Parisi of Copley, St. Hilary Parish, Fairlawn, was assigned to St. Mary of the Immaculate Conception Parish, Wooster.

● Brian Matthew Peters, son of William and Pam Peters of Columbus, Ohio, St. Raphael Parish, Bay Village, was assigned to SS. Robert and William Parish, Euclid.

● Kyle Jacob Rosser, son of Linda and John Rosser of Lorain, St. Peter Parish, Lorain, was assigned to St. Albert the Great Parish, North Royalton.

Bishop Woost said Deacon Parisi contacted him several weeks ago inquiring about some language in the ordination rite. He asked for clarification of the words resolve and promise, both of which appear in the rite. The ensuing conversation “blessed me, challenged me and gave me hope,” the bishop said.

He told his student that resolve indicates he has decided firmly on a course of action to grow into. It is something that continue to guide, shape and challenge his life. But the promise of respect and obedience to his bishop has an immediate consequence and a concrete objective, which will become known when he receives his diaconal parish assignment.

“This promise empowers you to be the hands and heart of the bishop, of our bishop, to be a shepherd and a servant in places where he is unable to be. This promise is made not solely to a particular person, but also to his office, his mission and ministry,” Bishop Woost said. “The promise of obedience must be about more than merely agreeing to do what one is told to do.”

He reminded the newly ordained deacons that they are earthen vessels, but they hold a treasure. “You have not chosen Christ; Christ has chosen you. He has called you friends, the ones he loves,” he said, noting that Christ’s love in them empowers their promise of obedience and sets the course of their resolve.

“May your love in Christ – and ours – fire such obedience to and through the ministry of the bishop, the mission of the Church and the power of God’s word that you will always move inspired by the Spirit in tune with the Father’s will,” the bishop said.

“Friends of Jesus, chosen by Christ, we invoke him now to send his Sprit to lay claim to every space of your lives and to strengthen your resolve to this course of action in obedience to his command: ‘Love one another as I have loved you.’”

After Mass, Bishop Malesic congratulated the newly ordained and said he was happy to call them deacon for the first time. “But don’t get too used to being called deacon because next year, God willing, you’ll be called father. Bishop Woost laid hands on you today at your ordination. I’ll get to lay hands on you next year at your priestly ordination,” he said. “Thank you for your ‘yes’ in answering God’s call.”

He reminded the seven new deacons that they were “babies as ministers. You’ll make mistakes, Lean from them and know that God will guide you and give you strength.” The bishop also thanked the families, friends, pastors, formators and others who helped prepare the seven men for ministry. “Today’s event will be etched in your memory – what the cathedral floor felt like, what it felt like to have Bishop Woost lay hands on you and the feel of your stole and dalmatic.”

On May 18, the bishop said – “God willing” – he will ordain Deacon Michael Garvin to the priesthood for service to the Diocese of Cleveland. Deacon Garvin assisted at the ordination liturgy and composed one of the hymns sung at the Mass.

Seminarian Travis Seagraves of the Diocese of Youngstown will be ordained to the transitional diaconate for service to his diocese on May 25. And two others who were ordained last year as transitional deacons for the Youngstown Diocese – Kevin Bertleff and William Wainio – also will be ordained to the priesthood in their diocese in June.

Addressing the seven new deacons once again, Bishop Malesic told them: “Now I am ready to send you out to do what Christ asks of you – to be a servant.”

The diaconate ordination Mass was livestreamed and archived. Watch it here.

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