Fr Altman Visit Not Approved by Diocese of Wichita
The Diocese of Wichita was notified of a social advertisement for an event in the Diocese of Wichita, featuring Father James Altman, priest of the Diocese of Lacrosse, Wisconsin as speaker. This event is not associated with or sanctioned by the Diocese of Wichita. Father Altman has not sought or received the approval of Bishop Carl Kemme. The bishop of Lacrosse, Bishop William Callahan has confirmed that Father Altman does not currently enjoy good standing with the Diocese of Lacrosse and has been restricted in his ministry.
The Catholic Diocese of Wichita covers 20,021 square miles in the central and southeastern quarter of the state of Kansas and includes 25 counties.
- 120,115 Catholics reside within the Catholic Diocese of Wichita
- 90 individual parishes
- 112 diocesan priests
- 34 Catholic elementary schools and 4 Catholic high schools
At his ordination to the priesthood, a man kneels and places his hands into the hands of his bishop. This act signifies his obedience to and respect of the bishop and his successors. Through this symbolic action, the priest or deacon is ultimately placing his own will in the hands of God through the hands of the successor to the Apostles.
This promise of obedience implies — and requires — the exercise by a priest of two virtues: trust and love. It is as if he says, “I express my trust and love for God by surrendering my will to his through the mediation of my bishop. By trusting my bishop, I recognize that his decisions are made for my own good and the good of the church. In the same vein, I strive to embrace his decisions out of love for Christ and the church, putting their good above my own.”
While it may appear that obedience hinders a priest’s free will, it actually offers an occasion for him to conform his life more closely to Jesus Christ. When a priest offers himself obediently to his bishop, he imitates Jesus’ own obedience that he offered the Father in all his actions here on earth. He freely chose this out of love for his Father and us, and trust in his will.