Archbishop Aquila celebrated Mass on Saturday, September 27th for the installation of 25 men to the ministries of lector and acolyte. The ministries of Lector and Acolyte are considered steps to receiving Holy Orders.
“Passage through this rite marks a greater devotion on the part of the seminarian to the Word of God,” said Denver seminarian Daniel Ciucci, who was installed a Lector on Saturday. “We must be ‘doers of the word and not just hearers alone.'”
Ciucci was one of nine men to be installed Lectors, whereby he was charged with proclaiming the word of God in the liturgy as well as teaching those children and adults who wish to learn about the scriptures in catechism classes or in RCIA. Each of these nine men received a book of scripture from the Archbishop,
which is representative of their mission as lectors: proclaiming the Word of God and meditating upon it.
Shawn Galvin, another seminarian for the Archdiocese of Denver installed as a Lector Saturday, talked about the importance of the Word of God in Mass: “The Mass is made up of two parts: the liturgy of the Word and the liturgy of the Eucharist. The liturgy of the Word through reading out loud the scriptures and then through the priests expounding upon those scriptures gets us into contact with God through the scriptures. These scriptures are the Word that God has given us to reveal Himself to us, to put us in contact with Him.”
Acolytes were also installed during Saturday’s Mass. “The ministry of acolyte is centered around the Eucharist,” said Andrew Kinstetter, an installed acolyte studying for the Diocese of Cheyenne. “It means that I, as an instituted acolyte, will serve more closely at the altar during the Sacrifice of the Mass, assisting deacons and priests in their ministry of service.”
“That closeness is a great joy, and it fires with zeal and love the heart of a future priest!” said Andrew Morrow, a seminarian studying for the Diocese of Helena, who was installed an acolyte along with 15 other men studying for dioceses as far reaching as Vietnam.
“The Acolyte is specifically called and hence radically set apart to conform his life to the Lord’s Sacrifice through the care of the Sacred Vessels used at Mass,” said Denver seminarian Matthew Magee, who ceremonially received the paten with the bread that was to be consecrated at the Mass that day. “The Acolyte receiving the paten with bread [or chalice with wine], symbolizes that he is being entrusted with the gifts of bread and wine which are brought forth by the People of God and which will then be sacrificed at that Mass.” This part of the rite is repeated with each man who is to be installed acolyte.
Of the 16 men who were installed acolytes, 15 expect to be ordained to the diaconate next year.
Please pray for these and all the men at St. John Vianney Seminary as they continue to study and prepare to be ordained priests. Visit our new Meet Our Seminarians page to see all the seminarians studying at St. John Vianney to be ordained priests for dioceses around the world.