On June 24th, the Solemnity of the Birth of St. John the Baptist, the Most Rev. George J. Lucas will ordain eighteen permanent deacons for the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois. This will be the first group of permanent deacons ordained for the Diocese since Pope Paul VI restored it.
Currently, five permanent deacons live in the Diocese, each having moved here after their diaconal ordinations. One comes from Detroit, one from St. Louis, two from Chicago and one from Rockford.
As part of the Diocese's efforts to prepare the presbyterate to receive these new members of the clergy a special meeting is being held today to discuss the training and formation these eighteen men have received.
Personally, I am quite excited with the prospects of having a deacon in our parish, although we do not know yet if we will indeed receive one. Even so, I am hopeful.