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Twenty-two Permanent and Transitional Catholic Deacons will be Ordained on Saturday, May 8 at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. at Holy Name Cathedral in Chicago

The Archdiocese of Chicago has the largest Catholic diaconate in the world with 520 active deacons

Chicago -  (May 4, 2021) – Twenty-two permanent and transitional Catholic deacons will be ordained at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Masses on Saturday, May 8, 2021 at Holy Name Cathedral, 735 N. State St., Chicago. Cardinal Blase J. Cupich, archbishop of Chicago, will be the main celebrant at the 10 a.m. ordination. Bishop Robert Casey, vicar general of the Archdiocese of Chicago, will preside over the afternoon Mass. The newly ordained deacons will be assigned to parishes in Arlington Heights; Calumet City; Chicago; Des Plaines; Hanover Park; Mount Prospect; Mundelein; Orland Hills; Palatine;Streamwood; Waukegan and Winnetka. The ordinations will be livestreamed on the archdiocese’s YouTube channel [10 a.m. Mass link and 2 p.m. Mass link].

“Deacons bring their diverse life and professional experiences to their ministerial roles in the Church which benefit us all,” said Cardinal Cupich. “They can identify with those who have experienced hardships as well as celebrate the joys of life’s most special moments and sacred celebrations. These men and their spouses provide witness to God’s love and grace in serving their communities as stewards of the Church.” 

In the Catholic Church, deacons preparing for the priesthood are known as transitional deacons. They are seminarians ordained after their third year of theology studies at Mundelein Seminary, and will return for one more year of studies as deacons before ordination to the priesthood in 2022. Those not planning to be ordained priests are called permanent deacons. Married men may be ordained permanent deacons, and single men may be ordained as permanent deacons with a commitment to celibacy.

The newly ordained deacons will assist the bishop and his priests in ministries of the Word, Liturgy and Charity. This includes proclaiming the Gospel, leading intercessions, preaching, preparing the altar, celebrating baptisms, leading the faithful in prayer, distributing holy communion, witnessing marriages and conducting wake and funeral services. Deacons also identify the needs of poor and underserved, and shepherd the Church's resources to meet those needs.  

Diaconate formation for permanent deacons requires completion of a comprehensive, four-year program through the Institute for Diaconal Studies or the Instituto de Liderazgo Pastoral, for Spanish speakers, both located at the University of Saint Mary of the Lake in Mundelein. The programs include human, spiritual, intellectual and pastoral dimensions of formation and a year-long parish pastoral ministry internship. The program is mandated by both the Vatican and the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.  

Please see below for the list of this year’s candidates for the diaconate

Permanent deacons, their wives, if married, and home parishes

  • Deacon Alfredo and Andrea Alviar - Saint Gall, Chicago
  • Deacon Simón and Alma Anguiano - St. John Bosco, Chicago
  • Deacon Pedro and Araceli Benítez - Saint Ansgar, Hanover Park
  • Deacon José and Marcela Bernabé - Saint Elizabeth of the Trinity, Chicago 
  • Deacon Johnny and Susan Burnett - St. James, Arlington Heights 
  • Deacon Timothy and Jennifer Davidson - St. John the Evangelist, Streamwood
  • Deacon José and Cristina Figueroa - St. Mary, Des Plaines
  • Deacon Kevin Kucik - St. Hedwig, Chicago
  • Deacon John and Eileen Murray - Saints Faith Hope and Charity, Winnetka
  • Deacon Derek and Jolanta Oliver - St. Thomas of Villanova, Palatine
  • Deacon José and Ena Marisol Oporto - Jesus Shepherd of Souls, Calumet City
  • Deacon Miguel and Norma Ramos - Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe, Des Plaines
  • Deacon Gustavo and Guadalupe Rebolledo - Saints Genevieve and Stanislaus Bishop and Martyr, Chicago
  • Deacon Rafael and Hipólita Romaní - Santa Maria del Popolo, Mundelein
  • Deacon David and Lori Schuster - St. Emily, Mount Prospect
  • Deacon Jorge Soto and Otilia Salazar - Most Blessed Trinity Parish, Waukegan
  • Deacon Ramón Velázquez and Emelia Camacho - Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe, Des Plaines
  • Deacon Robert and Catherine Marich Velcich - Saint Elizabeth Seton Church, Orland Hills
  • Deacon Jake and Christina Vercimak - St. Mary of Perpetual Help – All Saints – Saint Anthony, Chicago
  • Deacon Philip and Deborah Wroblewski - Jesus Shepherd of Souls, Calumet City

Transitional Deacons and their summer parish assignments

  • Deacon Michael Klatt – St. John Brebeuf, Niles
  • Brother Joseph Brom, Canons Regular of St. John Cantius – St. Peter, Volo

The Archdiocese of Chicago has the largest Catholic Diaconate community in the world with 520 active deacons involved in 218 parishes and agencies. Since 1972, the archdiocese has ordained 1,427 men as permanent deacons. Active, retired and inactive deacons total 720, while another 75 Chicago deacons serve in dioceses around the country – from Florida to California.