Seven Men To Be Ordained Deacons
Diocese now blessed with more than 100 deacons
June 9, 2009, WORCESTER, MA – Most Rev. Robert J. McManus, Bishop of Worcester, will ordain seven men to the permanent diaconate on
June 13 at
10 a.m. at the Cathedral of St. Paul. They are John Barton, Michael Chase, William Griffin, Colin Novick, Paul Pizzarella, Court Shields, and Anthony Xatse. All are welcome to attend the ordination. Among those scheduled to attend are diocesan representatives and family and friends of the men being ordained.
John Barton, of St. George Parish, Worcester, and his wife Donna have a son and two grandchildren. Son of Helen Lawson and the late Peter Barton, Mr. Barton, was born in 1945 in Worcester. He graduated from Sutton High School and received his bachelor’s degree from Worcester State College in 1969.
Mr. Barton is now retired but previously worked for New England Telephone in Worcester. He is a past Faithful Navigator of the Bishop O’Reilly Assembly of the Knights of Columbus, fourth degree.
He will preach at a Mass of Thanksgiving at 11 a.m. June 14 at St. George Church. Fr. Ronald Falco will preside and Fr. Charles Dumphy will concelebrate. Deacon Norbert H. Archibald, who serves there, will be assisting. Deacon Barton is also scheduled to preach at a Mass of Thanksgiving at 9:30 a.m. June 28 at Holy Family Parish, Worcester. Father Richard G. Roger, pastor, will preside.
Michael Chase, of Christ the King Parish, Worcester, and his wife Mary have three children. Mr. Chase, son of John G. Chase and the late June E. (Savi) Chase, was born in 1950 in Ipswich, Mass. He graduated from St. Peter’s Boys High School in Gloucester, Mass., and received his bachelor’s degree in English from the College of the Holy Cross in 1973 and his master’s in business administration from Assumption College in 1991. His brother, John Chase, Jr., is an Episcopal priest in the Houston area.
He is a quality assurance specialist for S & E Specialty Polymers in Lunenburg. He previously owned Photo Expert in Shrewsbury and was director of quality for Quabaug Corp. in North Brookfield.
Mr. Chase will preach the Mass of Thanksgiving at 11 a.m. June 14 at Christ the King. Father John Foley will preside and Fathers Walter Riley and Richard Trainor will concelebrate. Deacon Joseph M. Baniukiewicz, who serves there, will assist.
William Griffin, of St. Edward the Confessor Parish, Westminster, and his wife Marianne have a son, William M. Griffin Jr. Mr. Griffin was born in 1948 in Springfield, to Marie and the late Martin J. Griffin,.
He graduated from Cathedral High School in Springfield. He studied to be a Capuchin priest at St. Lawrence Friary in Milton, Mass. He got his diploma as a registered nurse from Fitchburg State College/Burbank Hospital Joint Program in 1974, his bachelor’s degree in nursing from Fitchburg State College in 1987 and his master’s degree in nursing from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst in 1996.
He is a clinical specialist psychiatric mental health clinician and an advanced practice registered nurse for North Central Human Services in Gardner. He previously worked for Spectrum Health Systems and Boston Road Clinic in Fitchburg, Heywood Hospital in Gardner and Burbank Hospital in Fitchburg.
Mr. Griffin will preach at a Mass of Thanksgiving at 11 a.m. June 14 at St. Edward’s. Father Terence T. Kilcoyne will preside and Father Frank Liistro will concelebrate. Deacon Roderick F. Cashes, who serves there, will also assist. Mr. Griffin will also preach at a Mass of Thanksgiving at 10:30 a.m. June 21 for Our Lady of Jasna Gora and Our Lady of the Rosary Parishes in Clinton. Father Tomasz J. Borkowski, pastor, will preside.
Colin Novick, of Holy Family Parish, Worcester, is married to Tracy Novick. They have three children. Mr. Novick was born in 1973 in Worcester to F. Michael and Catherine Novick. His godfather, Brother James Kelly, is a Xaverian Brother.
He graduated from St. John High School in Shrewsbury in 1991 and earned a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Chicago in 1995.
Mr. Novick is executive director of Greater Worcester Land Trust in Worcester. He previously worked for Bolton Conservation Trust, Appalachian Mountain Club in Boston, Regional Environmental Council in Worcester, and Mohegan Council Boy Scouts of America at Treasure Valley.
In 2005 Mr. Novick received the Worcester Telegram & Gazette Young Leader Award.
Mr. Novick will assist at the Mass of Thanksgiving at10:15 a.m. on June 14 at the Cathedral of St. Paul together with Mr. Xiatse.
Paul Pizzarella, of St. John Parish, Worcester, and his wife Virginia have four children and four grandchildren. Mr. Pizzarella, son of Josephine and the late Frank A. Pizzarella, was born in1945 in Worcester.
He graduated from North High School in Worcester and received his bachelor’s degree in fine arts and secondary education from Framingham State College in 1989 and his master’s degree in library science from Southern Connecticut State University in 1997. He is a library media specialist at Tourtellotte Memorial High School in Thompson, Conn.
Mr. Pizzarella was a petty officer third class in the United States Navy, serving in Florida, California, and Vietnam. He received the National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Campaign Medal, and Vietnam Service Medal.
He will preach at a Mass of Thanksgiving on July 5 at 10 a.m. at St. John’s Church, Worcester. Father John F. Madden, pastor, will preside.
Court Shields, of Holy Trinity Parish, Bolton, and his wife, Mary, have three children and two grandchildren. Mr. Shields, son of the late Steven and Claire Courtney Shields, was born in 1947 in Minot, N.D. He graduated from Billings Central Catholic High School in Billings, Montana and received his bachelor’s degree in business administration from Montana State College in Billings.
Mr. Shields is self-employed as a consultant in health care sales. He previously worked for Tufts Health Plan, The Wellness Corporation, and Horizon Behavioral Strategies.
On June 14, he will be preaching at a Mass of Thanksgiving at 10:45 a.m. in St. Francis Xavier Church. Father Dennis J. O’Brien, pastor, will preside and Columban Father Paul O’Malley will concelebrate.
Anthony Xatse, of Blessed Sacrament Parish, Worcester, and his wife Mary have five children and four grandchildren. He is the son of Agnes Komlagah and the late Christian Dua Xatse, and was in 1956 in Accra, Ghana. He received a diploma in language studies from the University of Cape Coast School of Languages in Ajumako, Ghana, in 1988 and a post-graduate diploma from the University of Ghana in Legon in 1993.
Mr. Xatse is a residential counselor for Community HealthLink and assistant program manager for The Bridge of Central Massachusetts, both in Worcester. He was previously quality control inspector for Future Electronics in Bolton, a transport manager for Kingdom Transport Services in Accra and principal of St. John Doeswijck Memorial School in Kete-Krachi, Ghana. He has two cousins who are priests and a cousin who is a nun.
He will preach at a Mass of Thanksgiving at 4 p.m. June 13 at Blessed Sacrament. Msgr. F. Stephen Pedone, pastor, will presiding and will be assisted by Deacon Roy F. Briggs of Blessed Sacrament. He will also preach at a Mass of Thanksgiving at the Cathedral of St. Paul on Sunday, June 14 at 10:15 am. at which Msgr. James Moroney will preside.
In addition to the two men being ordained on June 13, there are 73 active deacons serving in parishes and other ministries. Twenty-three men are currently enrolled in the Diaconate program of study and formation. The Diocese of Worcester also has six deacons serving outside the diocese and fifteen deacons that have retired from active ministry.
According to the latest Kenedy directory, there are 16,935 deacons in the United States. Like their brother priests, each is incardinated or officially tied to a diocese.
Backgrounder on the Order of Deacon
The Diaconate, also called Permanent Diaconate, is an ordained ministry within the Catholic Church conferred by the Bishop through the Sacrament of Holy Orders. It was restored in 1968 by the Bishops in the United States following a reestablishment of the Order by Vatican Council II the previous year. For centuries prior to that time, the Order of Deacon had been reserved to a temporary status on the road to priesthood, also known as the order of presbyter.
Diaconate comes from the Greek word diakonia or service. Since all Catholics are called by Baptism to be of service to their brothers and sisters, why have an ordained ministry of service? Though this is a very complex question, which has generated much discussion, two important points must be stressed. Service to the community is the primary role of the deacon and by bearing witness to the ministry of service in a parish, he assists the whole community in becoming more aware of that aspect of their faith. Secondly, the order of deacon sacramentalizes service. The deacon as an ordained servant of the community is more than a functionary but bears witness to that aspect of Jesus and his ministry in apostolic times.
Permanent deacons are clerics who can perform all of the functions associated with their order. These include proclaiming the Gospel, preaching the homily, assisting the priest at Mass, administering the sacrament of Baptism, distributing Communion, presiding over funeral and burial services, acting as the official witness at weddings and exercising certain ecclesiastical offices. As servants of the Church, they also take on charitable or administrative duties.
Liturgical functions represent only a part of how a deacon's ministry is carried out in a parish. In many parishes, the deacon is responsible for the baptismal preparation program for parents and administers the sacrament as part of that faith journey with the family and the child being baptized.
Single or married men can be ordained deacons. Deacons take a vow of celibacy if they are ordained while single or if their wife dies. They go through a training period of four and one-half years in theology, scripture, canon law, spirituality, and pastoral ministry. In preparation for their ordination, they are formally received into the ministries of lector and acolyte. Once ordained, he does not receive financial compensation for being a deacon, though the deacon may work in positions which receive compensation.