Back in the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois this weekend, the priests who are receiving new priestly assignments are making the announcements of their new parishes to their current parishes. So it is that I am at long last able and happy to announce the news of my next assignment as decreed by His Excellency the Most Reverend Thomas John Paprocki [N.B.: The text of the assignment first given to me is in the reverse order of that actually decreed by the Bishop; the corrected text follows]:
REVEREND DAREN J. ZEHNLE is appointed PAROCHIAL VICAR of SAINT AGNES PARISH, SPRINGFIELD, ILLINOIS, ASSOCIATE DIRECTOR of the OFFICE FOR DIVINE WORSHIP AND THE CATECHUMENATE, CHIEF MASTER OF CEREMONIES TO THE BISHOP, and DIOCESAN JUDGE for the DIOCESAN TRIBUNAL, from Graduate Studies in Canon Law at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome, Italy, effective July I, 2016.
The Diocesan Pastoral Center is located within the boundaries of St. Agnes Parish. In fact, I'll be able to walk to the office each day without any difficulty, which will be very helpful in fulfilling these four roles. I'm not quite sure yet how my time will be divided between them, but expect everything will fall into place after a few weeks.
While I am looking forward to being of service to the faithful of the Diocese and to Bishop Paprocki through my coming work in the curia, I am very pleased about being involved in parish ministry again. Above all, I'm excited to soon be serving with Father Robert J. Jallas, Pastor of St. Agnes Parish, who was pastor of my home parish while I was in the seminary.
Father Jallas and I spent many hours together solving the problems of the world and I greatly valued his friendship and encouragement throughout my seminary years. I was honored when he agreed to vest me as a deacon:
|Never mind the incorrect time stamp|
I have always known Father Jallas to be a man of deep and thorough thought. Indeed, he had so well thought through the most efficient and dignified way to help me put on the stole and dalmatic that I was the first deacon vested out of the four of us ordained that day.
He has been a good friend over the years and is a dedicated pastor with a great sense of humor; it will be a great joy to work with him again.
|Father Jallas offers a toast at the reception after my Mass of Thanksgiving|
My classes here in Rome will continue through the end of May and the comprehensive examinations will take place the third week of June. A few days after my last exam, I will return to Quincy for a few days before settling into the rectory in Springfield which isn't far from my favorite restaurant in Springfield, K & S Hawaiian BBQ (you should try the crispy mahi-mahi or the chicken katsu).
Please remember me and the other priests who are receiving new assignments (a full listing of which will be printed in the next issue of Catholic Times), the parishes receiving them us, and the parishes being left by them. The weeks around a transfer are always emotional for everyone involved. For me, the emotion at this transfer is only one of joy.