Saturday, May 23, 2009

Ordination Day in Metuchen

This morning, our own Bishop Bootkoski ordained three men to the Priesthood in St. Francis Cathedral in Metuchen.

Ordination Day is fun for a bunch of reasons.  First of all, because I think it brings out the optimist in the Priests who attend.  We all watch what's happening and can't help but remember when it was us on the floor of the sanctuary or with our hands in the Bishop's hands.  Sadly, Priests tend to have "pessimist" as their default setting (lowered expectations mean that your hopes have nowhere to go but up).  But we didn't start out that way, and looking at the nervousness of the newly ordained reminds us how we should always approach the Sacraments with a certain amount of awe and trembling.

Ordination day is also a chance to hang out with other Priests both before and after the Mass in a relaxed atmosphere.  As seminarians, we serve the Mass, and we're a nervous wreck that we don't screw up enough to get the Bishop to reconsider our competence.  As the ones being ordained, we're in a fog and never get a chance to relax and enjoy the moment.  But once we've gotten past our own day and begin to attend ordinations as concelebrants, it's a great morning to kibbitz with the brethren.  The other time we get together is the Chrism Mass, and smack in the midst of Holy Week, we've got a bunch of things on our minds.  In contrast, by the time we get to ordination day in late May, First Communions are over, along with most parish activities, and so we're a much more relaxed bunch.  Unfortunately I couldn't stay around afterwards to talk; I was scheduled for our 12:30 confessions.  The Mass ended around noon, and I made it back here at 12:28.

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