By Jerry Zufelt, Acting Editor
GREENSBURG — “What a great moment … what a great joy for us all,” Bishop Lawrence E. Brandt said as he began celebrating the April 30, 2006 Mass at Blessed Sacrament Cathedral where he ordained diocesan seminarians Alan N. Polczynski and Timothy J. Kruthaupt as transitional deacons.
Standing before the bishop, Polczynski, of St. Margaret Mary Parish, Lower Burrell, and Kruthaupt, of St. Pius X Parish, Mount Pleasant, promised to live lives of celibacy, to accept the ministry of the diaconate and to obey the bishop, his successors and his superiors.
Timothy J. Kruthaupt, front, and Alan N. Polczynski, right, sing during their April 30 ordination Mass at Blessed Sacrament Cathedral, Greensburg. Photo by Ed Zelachoski. In his homily prior to ordaining the deacons by the laying on of hands in silence and the Prayer of Ordination, Bishop Brandt said that deacons help the bishop and his priests in the “ministry of the word, of the altar and of charity, showing themselves to be servants to all.
“Furthermore, it will be their duty, at the bishop’s direction, to exhort believers and unbelievers alike and to instruct them in holy doctrine,” Bishop Brandt said. “Do the will of God from the heart; serve the people in love and joy as you would the Lord.”
He reminded them that their promise of celibacy will allow them to “cling to Christ more easily with an undivided heart” and free them “more completely for the service of God and man.
“Never allow yourselves to be turned away from the hope offered by the Gospel,” Bishop Brandt said. “Now you are not only hearers of this Gospel, but also its ministers.”
After the Prayer of Ordination, the deacons were vested with the deacons’ stole and dalmatic, Kruthaupt by Msgr. Michael W. Matusak, pastor of St. Pius X Parish and administrator of Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary Parish, both in Mount Pleasant, and Polczynski by Msgr. Raymond E. Riffle, pastor of Our Lady of Grace Parish, Greensburg.
The deacons were presented the Book of Gospels by Bishop Brandt, who said, “Receive the Gospel of Christ, whose herald you have now become. Believe what you read, teach what you believe and practice what you teach.”
The new deacons assisted Bishop Brandt at the altar through the remainder of the Mass and distributed the blood of Christ at Communion.
The two have spent the past year on pastoral internships, Polczynski at Our Lady of Grace Parish and Kruthaupt at St. Margaret Mary Parish. They will return to Saint Vincent Seminary, Latrobe, for their final year of theological studies, and each will serve a diaconate pastoral experience in an assigned parish on weekends, according to Father Larry J. Kulick, co-director of the Office for Clergy Vocations.
After Mass, Polczynski called the day “great, wonderful.”
“It was just an exciting day, a long time coming,” said his mother, Rose, who said she is looking forward to next year in anticipation of the priestly ordination of both her son and Kruthaupt.
Kruthaupt called the day a “powerful experience,” a description of which “was hard to put into words.”
“I was so moved by the support, the turnout and the affirmation,” Father Kulick said of the day.
Article from the Catholic Accent