Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
Week of November 1, 1999
Local seminarian ordained deacon in St. Peter's Basilica
By FR. SYLVAIN CASAVANT
Special to the WCR
On Oct. 7, Stephen Hero, a seminarian of the Edmonton Archdiocese, was ordained to the diaconate at St. Peter's Basilica by Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger.
This was truly a wonderful experience not only for Stephen, but also for the members of his family who were present for this special occasion and for myself who had the privilege of representing the archdiocese.
One could easily see the impact of such an occasion on the faces of the new deacon, his parents and one of his sisters who travelled to Rome for the event.
Hero has been studying in Rome for the Edmonton Archdiocese since 1997 and will finish his master's degree in 2000. He should be ordained to the priesthood for the archdiocese after he returns from Rome.
However, being ordained to the diaconate with 30 of his classmates at St. Peter's Basilica is an event seldom experienced by any seminarian from Canada.
Joy permeated the basilica as the swelling of the pipe organ and triumphant singing of the seminary choir reverberated through the largest church in Christendom.
When the time came for the Litany of the Saints, one could feel peace making her presence known as 31 seminarians lay prostrate and the saints, visible and invisible, prayed that these men be strengthened in their commitment that they were now making.
The whole event brought one to the recognition that Christ was truly present and moving in his Church and that Christians need only respond to this divine will with an emphatic "yes."