On Friday July 15th, ‘minor orders’ as they used to be called were imposed upon several men in formation to become permanent deacons in our diocese. Amongst them is John Andrews from our Parish who with three others received the ministry of Acolyte. Others are became Lectors – ministers of the Word. Later this year, two more are to be ordained as Permanent Deacons. The Deacon is a minister of the Word, of Sacraments, and of Charity, and during their formation they receive these permanent ‘minor’ orders along the way. This vocation is it seems growing in our Diocese – please pray for all those in formation, and also for those to whom the Spirit may be calling, that they might hear Gods’ loving call.
Lectors have the responsibility to take the word of God to all people – most visibly perhaps by reading at Mass in church, but also as catechists, teachers or wherever in life God asks them to speak. At their ordination they are given a Bible and told to ‘Read the Word of God, believe what you read, and practice what you believe’.
Acolytes take God to the sick and Housebound in communion – as do special ministers of communion. The principle difference is that Acolytes may be asked to take the blessed sacrament to anyone anywhere – special ministers of communion are (formally at least) only to minister within the Parish to which they are commissioned, and only for a set timespan. At their ordination acolytes are asked to ‘show a sincere love for Christ’s Mystical Body, God’s holy people, and especially the weak and the sick’.
You may find out about those who are in the formation program at the diocesan website or ask John Andrews about it (always at 09:30 Mass).
In the Autumn, John will be organising some additional training for our special ministers of communion: if you are interested in this ministry please contact him or the Parish Office.