Dear Parish Family,
Last weekend, our Diocese of Lansing witnessed the ordination of five new priests and two new deacons. It was a day of great rejoicing! I still remember the day of my ordination on June 11, 2005 as the best of my life because it has led to all the joy of being a priest of Jesus Christ in these past eleven years. It’s like a priest’s wedding day, and similar to a wedding, there is a great banquet with many family and friends, entertainment, speeches and toasts (and the occasional roast)!
Fr. Brian had beautiful words of gratitude at the Mass of Ordination, speaking on behalf of all the new priests. To help our parish get to know him, below are a couple of excerpts from his remarks. After thanking those who prepared for the evening’s beautiful liturgy, Fr. Brian addressed all of those who have helped him throughout his journey to the priesthood:
There is also some very well-deserved gratitude and public recognition which we owe to many here today, which is put into words with greater difficulty. After all, how do you thank someone who gave you life; how do you thank someone who formed you in the faith; how do you really thank someone who has conferred upon you the grace of Holy Orders? And in what way do you convey gratitude to lifelong friends who sit in these pews, to the family who has prayed you to the altar? We don’t pretend to stand here before you today and ever be done being grateful. We will never be done saying thank you for all the gifts and love and help that we’ve been given by everyone here, treasures which are beyond price.
We happily offer this gratitude—to Mom and Dad; to those who are Moms and Dads to us; to Bishop Boyea; Bishop Mengeling; to the priests – the fathers in our diocese and in our seminaries who formed us to be fathers…. We offer thanks to the friends and family who keep us close, even though we offer this gratitude to you all with words that are unexpressive of what we truly feel…. More than all else, and most importantly of all, we give praise and thanks and honor and glory to the God who loves us without measure.
In the ordination program, Fr. Brian wrote these personal words to God and to his family:
Lord God, Faithful and True: thank you for the gift of life, for the grace of faith, and on this day especially for the treasure of a vocation to priestly ministry. In your Son Jesus you loved me ‘to the end’; may I receive nothing else but the grace to respond in kind… This day I say with St. Paul: “by the grace of God I am what I am”. May it be to God’s glory forever.
Mom and Dad: thank you for loving me unconditionally and for raising me to know and love God. I would not have arrived to this joyful day if not for the steadfast holiness of your marriage and the unyielding help of your support and prayer. I offer special thanks to my siblings, Katie and Paul, David and Danielle, to my entire extended family, and to my friends old and new. Thank you for your innumerable prayers and unwavering support which have been a continual source of strength and encouragement.
While we welcome Fr. Brian, we obviously are sad to see Fr. Kurian go. June 25 and 26 is his last weekend with us, and we will be honoring him after the 4:15 p.m. Mass with a dinner held at St. Joseph Oratory, and then on Sunday morning after the 10:00 a.m. and 12:00 p.m. Masses at the St. John Parish Center. Hope to see you then!
Yours in Christ,