Holy Mass with Cardinal Wuerl on Monday evening followed by his keynote talk on Tuesday morning began the convention week by inspiring all in attendance. Workshops on Tuesday and Thursday, a holy hour each morning during adoration of the Blessed Sacrament
Tonight the NCDVD 2012 annual convention opened with Evening prayer and Holy Mass with his Eminence Cardinal Donald Wuerl the main celebrant. His Eminence will be tomorrow's keynote speaker and tonight already gave us plenty to reflect on and pray about. He reminded each one of us that as part of the body of Christ we are all called to reflect the light of Christ to the world, but that we should remember that we ourselves will never, by ourselves, be as brilliant as He who is the true light.
Tonight I will attend the regional directors meeting as preparation for the opening of Convention week begins here in Oakland. Over two hundred attendees most of whom are diocesan vocation directors from around the country have been arriving all day. There are forty new vocation directors who have been participating all weekend in the pre-convention meetings. I will do my best to give a brief update regarding each day of the convention at the end of each night. Pray for us and the seminarians under our charge.
This weekend marked the third weekend of a pastoral assignment for Deacon Brian Maxwell in the diocese and the first weekend for parish assignments for Juan Angel Palacio and Ruben Dario Sanchez. Deacon Brian is traveling from Blessed John XXIII National Seminary in Weston MA each weekend to assist at Saint Bernard parish in Rockville Connecticut. Because Juan and Ruben are in their first year of English at Clark University, they will each visit their assigned parish in the diocese most weekends in order to practice the English they are learning during the week.
Starting this afternoon, Monday August 13, 2012, I will be providing sacraments for over 100 high school seniors who have decided to give up a week of their summer vacation to attend the Xavier Leadership Institute, also more commonly referred to as, XLI.
Juan Angel Aguirre Palacio and Ruben Dario Garcia Sanchez arrived safely into Boston's Logan Airport Sunday night at 10:55pm. After a long day of travel Father Henry Agudelo and I were able to greet them both along with Juan's mother and two nephews. This was very exciting because Juan had never met his nephews and had not seen his mother in almost twenty years! It was a short reunion while we waited for bags but after stopping for something simple to eat out on the Mass Pike, we finally arrived at Saint Bridget parish around 2:45am.
Praised be Jesus Christ now and forever! It's been a very busy winter, spring and summer in the vocation office which can only mean that the our prayers and the many holy hours and visits to the adoration chapels are generously being answered by the Harvest Master. Since the beginning of May, Bishop Cote has accepted five new men as sponsored seminarians for the diocese of Norwich.
What a great summer gathering with Bishop Cote and four of our seminarians. Joined by their summer pastors we gathered for a good old fashion New England Clam bake on the hottest day of the summer! Starting with evening prayer and finishing a couple hours later with a few words from our Bishop, I think it is safe to say that everyone had plenty to eat and enjoyed the evening very much. We look forward to next summer when all of the seminarians will be home together for the gathering.
This week of July 18th through July 22nd has been a hot one but also a busy one. Tuesday night Bishop Cote offered Holy Mass for the Diocesan Vocation Prayer team and then enjoyed a picnic with them, four of the seminarians, and several other men who are discerning a call to priesthood. Thursday I played in a Knights of Columbus golf fundraiser over at Quarry Ridge during a hot steamy morning and early afternoon and then headed to Pawcatuck where later in the day we had the Monthly Holy for vocations. That was well attended and is always a very prayerful experience.