Dear Sacred Heart and St. Mary on the Lake,
This Wednesday, August 11th, we will have our Youth Vocations Night from 6-9pm at St. Mary on the Lake. Join us for an inspirational night of vocations as we hear from Carter and Elyse Courtney, several Dominican Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Eucharist in Ann Arbor, and myself and the Seminarians about their vocations of marriage, religious life, and the priesthood. Learn how to hear God’s voice in your life and discern your calling by listening to their experiences! We will begin the night with Mass, followed by a Taco Bar in the parish hall before we listen to our speakers, ending with a Q&A with our guests and a fun group activity.
This is Seamus Kettner’s final weekend with us. What a blessing and he has certainly jumped into his internship experience from day one—joining us for school functions, sick calls, weddings, funerals, baptisms and plenty of Euchre and Cribbage. He led us on a four-week Bible Study of Tobit and a 33-day Marian consecration.
There are several next steps for Seamus in the next two years. The first will be receiving the ministry of Acolyte this coming fall. “The acolyte is instituted for service at the altar and to assist the Priest and Deacon. It is his place principally to prepare the altar and the sacred vessels and, if necessary, to distribute the Eucharist to the faithful as an extraordinary minister.” https://www.usccb.org/prayer-and-worship/the-mass/general-instruction-of-the-roman-missal/girm-chapter-3 This will take place at a special Mass at Sacred Heart Major Seminary in Detroit. If it is open to the public, I will let you know for anyone who would like to be there for it.
The next step will be ordination to the Diaconate which will take place this coming June. At this point, Seamus makes the commitments and promises that will define his life: a life of prayer, celibacy, simplicity, and obedience. As a deacon, he will be assigned to serve in a parish in the Diocese over the remainder of the summer and the coming school year. It is a great joy that during your last year in seminary you are able to spend all of the weekends serving and ministering in a parish. As a deacon he is able to read the Gospel, preach at Mass, celebrate baptisms, and witness marriages.
After that last year of seminary, he will be ordained a priest and be assigned as an associate pastor to one of our parishes. Typically, as an associate you will receive two assignments to give you two different pastor and parish experiences before becoming pastor for the first time. We have been blessed to be a part of Seamus’ training and experience over these past months. I am so grateful for your warm welcome—all of the things he has been able to take part in will become a valuable part of his discernment and future ministry. Thank you to Seamus! Know that our prayers go with you.
Our other seminarian, Josh Bauer, will be with us for a couple more weeks before he returns to his senior year at St. John Vianney College Seminary in MN. He has also been a great blessing and has helped on a number of projects. He was part of the cemetery crew mowing and weed whipping to keep Calvary beautiful. In the rectory he has helped with sanding and refinishing a downstairs hallway and oak stairs. It is the original hardwood that had been carpeted, so we had to remove old nails, staples, remnants of carpet glue, and varnish—it is great to see it come alive again. The rectory also has a back screened in porch that has gotten some new paint and ceiling tiles. With all of these projects I need to particularly thank Steve Kope who has lent us his time, expertise, and tools in making it possible.