Seminarians move closer to ordination

Six seminarians took part in one of two rites Thursday, July 30, in the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. (Advance photo)

One seminarian was installed as a Reader and five were admitted to Candidacy for Holy Orders by Bishop Carl A. Kemme Thursday, July 30, at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Wichita.

Seth J. Arnold was installed as a Reader. Jesus Bañuelos, Matthew J. Cooke, Caleb J. Kuestersteffen, Tomas F. Nolla, and Miles A. Swigart were admitted to Candidacy.

Bishop Carl A. Kemme recalled his seminary formation and the steps he took toward ordination in his homily.
“I often think if I had known then what I know now,” he said from his cathedra. “How much differently we might approach those moments if even for a moment we were enlightened with all that life would entail. I am convinced I would have remained on the path that leads to ordained ministry for I have never been without the conviction that this was God’s call for me.

“But I can say for sure I would have prayed more, I would have taken my studies and formation more seriously, I would have utilized my spiritual directors and confessors more regularly, I would have not been so proud to think that I had all the answers to the questions that I would soon come to realize few, if any, were asking. I would have certainly been more humble and simple if indeed I had known then what I know today.”

Bishop Kemme encouraged the six seminarians to persevere despite their inability to know their future challenges and the exhilarating experiences that await them.

“Enter into these next few years with greater intentional discernment and formation, to make the most of your time in seminary, to take advantage of all that is provided for you to grow spiritually, intellectually, emotionally, and humanly,” he said.

He urged the seminarians to make the most of their time because time passes quickly.

“You will – sooner than you can imagine – be here before the bishop and the diocesan family that has prayed for you and supported you all along the way, ready to lay down your life for the Lord and his holy people, first as a deacon and then as a priest, uttering from your heart the words we heard in the first reading: “Here I am, send me.”

Bishop Kemme closed his homily asking them to remember the ceremony as a grace-filled moment, “one among many, in your careful and discerning steps toward the vocation you believe God may very well be calling you to embrace, to serve in ordained ministry for the church in the Diocese of Wichita.”

The Admission to Candidacy offers the candidates for ordination an opportunity to publicly express their intention to receive ordination as a deacon and perhaps later as a priest.

A reader is responsible for the reading of the Scriptures (except for the Gospel) during a liturgical assembly. The reader may also direct the singing and present the general intercessions when a deacon or cantor is absent.