Deacon Paul's Farewell Remarks

June 25th 2017

            This past week I had the joyous occasion of achieving the 15th Anniversary of my ordination as a deacon. During my diaconal ordination by Bishop Lori at the time …. he gave the following instruction from the Ordination Rite as we both gripped the Book of the Gospels:

Receive the Gospel of Christ,

whose herald you now are.

Believe what you read

Teach what you believe

Practice what you teach.

            Those words have never lost their immense importance and obligation to me as an ordained deacon!

            Since June 22nd of  2002, I have tried to live up to that commission to be a “herald of the Gospel” striving to teach what the church believes, to practice what I preach to others, and to spread with joy and enthusiasm the truth Christ entrusted to His Church…in and out of season.

            God bestowed a great blessing upon me since the first day of my ordination as I was assigned to serve all of you wonderful people here at Holy Spirit Parish.

            For over 13 of those wonderful years I served side by side with Father Hyl in God’s vineyard here followed by his current successor, Monsignor Royal.

            A saying by some is that the only thing constant is “change.” So, it is with a heavy heart that I share with all of you the news that Bishop Caggiano has decided to end my assignment here at this parish. Today will be my last Sunday assisting at the masses here at Holy Spirit.

            Words cannot express the appreciation and gratitude that Janie, Paul Jr, Julia and I, have for the love and support each of you have shown to us over these years. It has truly been an honor and privilege to be invited into your lives to serve you not only as a deacon but also as a friend through your joys and sorrows. We will cherish the memories that we have shared as a family at Holy Spirit most especially through the SOUL Ministry, youth group, Confirmation classes that Julia and I had the opportunity to co-teach together, and ministering to the sick at nursing homes and the hospital. I want to wish Monsignor Royal and Monsignor Cullen, God’s continued blessings in their ministry here at Holy Spirit Church. I would also like to extend my thanks to Dr. Sandy Errico and the choir for all of their support.

            As I bid farewell I would like to offer you at this time a special prayer adapted from St. Patrick:

Christ be in the eyes of all who see me,

in the ears of all who hear me,

on the lips of all who speak of me

Christ be in the minds of all who think of me

Christ be in the hearts of all who love me

Christ be before me and behind me

Christ be above me and beneath me

Christ on my right and on my left

Christ be my all.

Amen.

 

Deacon Paul can be reached at dnjennings@diobpt.org

 

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