Fourteen Men Ordained as Permanent Deacons for Diocese
By Amanda Hudson, News Editor
October 4, 2018
ROCKFORD—Fourteen men were ordained as Permanent Deacons for the Diocese of Rockford at the Cathedral of St. Peter in Rockford on Saturday, Sept. 29.
Bishop David Malloy celebrated the Mass, which included the Rite of Ordination for the men accepted to the Sacred Order of Deacon.
“We are happy and we rejoice with you who have prayed and discerned and accepted a call to prayer and to a deeper and public service to the Church,” Bishop Malloy said in his homily. “Whoever wishes to be great among you shall be your servant, whoever wishes to be the first among you shall be your slave,” he said in English and Spanish, quoting Jesus in the Bible.
“At the heart of your ministry,” the bishop added, “even when no one else is around, will be your life of prayer, and your use of the Breviary (a liturgical, daily prayer called The Liturgy of the Hours).  Be faithful to this promise.”
The Cathedral was packed with priests, other deacons, friends and families, all to celebrate and witness the ordination rite, which included promises made by the candidates to serve as deacons “with humble charity,” to hold fast to faith and proclaim it, to deepen their prayer and to conform their way of life “always to the example of Christ.” Each then went to the bishop to promise him directly their respect and obedience to him and his successors.
The men then prostrated themselves as a litany calling upon God and His saints was sung. That was followed by the laying on of the bishop’s hands upon each of them in silence. Bishop Malloy then prayed the prayer of ordination over them. Each was vested in a diaconal stole and a dalmatic. Finally, the bishop presented each with the Book of the Gospels, and he and several deacons bestowed a brotherly welcome to them.
“Brothers, what is entrusted to you today is our Catholic faith,” Bishop Malloy said. “It is Christ Himself and the truth guarded and transmitted to each generation by the Church.  Love the Church. Your every word, every counsel, every homily, must be without question the faith of the Church. Study that faith well. Stand up for the faith – even those elements which our society finds challenging or hard to hear. That is a part of charity, and element of service.”
Noting the current Church scandals, calling it “not an easy moment in the Church’s life,” Bishop Malloy noted that it is “a moment where your faith is needed – more than ever ... Real changes are going to come, faithful of course to Christ and the Church He guides.  
“But now we need witnesses. We need all the more faithful men and women, faithful young people, faithful deacons who do not shy away from proclaiming Jesus Christ and Him crucified.
“It is our prayer that your ministry will contribute to the spread of God’s Word and the love of our Catholic faith.”
The Mass was followed by a luncheon in the school gym, which was filled with smiles and laughter, hugs and congratulations. The new deacons also received their assignment letters from the bishop. 
Deacon Ronald Abramowicz will serve at St. Mary in Oregon and St. Mary in Polo; Deacon Robert Armstrong at St. Margaret Mary in Algonquin; Deacon Jose Castillo Bermea at St. Laurence Parish in Elgin; Deacon Richard Broderick at St. Bridget in Loves Park; and Deacon Fermin Arenas Garcia at St. Patrick in Rochelle.
Deacon John Gibson will be in service at St. Bridget in Loves Park; Deacon Kevin Hunter at St. Rita Parish in Rockford; Deacon Steven Johnson at St. James in Belvidere; Deacon Juan Manuel Luna at SS. Peter & Paul, Cary; and Deacon David Marcheschi at St. Mary in Huntley.
Deacon Thomas Murray will serve at St. Mary Parish in Woodstock; Deacon Gregory Norris at Holy Cross in Batavia; Deacon Michael Pipitone at St. Patrick in Hartland; and Deacon David Stowell at St. Patrick Parish in St. Charles.