When I arrived at my first assignment as a recently ordained priest nine years ago, the pastor asked me what my goal was as I began ministry as a priest in a parish. I remember my response vividly. I told him that my goal was to learn and experience as much as I could so that one day, I can be a pastor. For me, the vocation of a priest closely resembles that of the vocation of marriage. Ordination to the Priesthood binds the priest to his bride, the Church, that is, the People of God, much like a husband is bound to his wife in love and service.
When a priest is called to take on the role of pastor of a parish, his vocation takes on a radical relationship of love and service to the
people he is called to serve, much like when a husband becomes a father. It is in his role as pastor where the title “Father” bursts with new and intense meaning for the priest. To the wonderful people of Saint James the Apostle Church, whom I feel honored and privileged to serve as your Pastor, please know that my heart is filled to the brim with excitement and hope as I am formally installed as the fourteenth pastor of our church.
I feel doubly blessed that the Installation coincides with our parish’s Centennial commencement. I pray that these joint celebrations are a providential sign of good things to come. For sure, the Centennial committee has been working hard to make this year of celebration one for the books. Please join us over the next year as we, together, remember our past, celebrate our faith, and lead boldly into the future.