Two priests’ lives converged May 24 at St. Patrick Cathedral, when, from differing backgrounds and histories, they lay prostrate in front of the same altar, knelt and promised fealty to the same bishop, and received the same sacrament.
WASHINGTON (CNS) -- Memorial Day, the traditional kickoff of summer marked by family getaways, cookouts, picnics and parades, also includes somber events the day was created for such as wreath-laying ceremonies, prayer services and visits to war memorials.
In the sprawling Diocese of Fort Worth, which includes 710,000 faithful, the 580 dedicated volunteers involved in the local Society of Saint Vincent de Paul make up less than .1 percent of the Catholic population. Their impact on North Texas communities, however, is enormous.
Reverence and humility show in his eyes, smile, and carefully-worded homilies. Deacon Raul Martinez Lopez worries about his vocabulary and presentation, but to the assembly he delivers his thoughts clearly, even in his new, second language. Dcn. Martinez, whom Bishop Michael Olson will ordain to the priesthood at St. Patrick Cathedral 10 a.m., Saturday, May 24, assisted at Holy Family Parish’s noon Mothers’ Day Mass May 11.
As a young child growing up in Houston, Deacon Gary Picou had a dream. “I wanted to be an astronaut. That was my goal,” he said. However, when the young man took the physical, he learned he was color blind. “My dream of being an astronaut kind of died,” said Dcn. Picou, soon to be ordained a priest for the Diocese of Fort Worth. But in one of many references to the mystery of God, the deacon noted the color blindness may have been one of ways God works, and a demonstration of his sense of humor and providence.