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An ordination journey nears its destination

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Dialog Editor

When Rich Jasper recently traced the course of his life that lead to the priesthood, he said, “As you can see, the Lord writes straight with crooked lines.”

However, in an era when men are often ordained beyond their 20s, Jasper’s vocation path of ardently practicing his faith, teaching it to young people, and sharing it with parishioners and with the needy has had a clear route to the altar in retrospect.

Jasper, 42, will be ordained a priest for the Diocese of Wilmington by Bishop Malooly on May 20 at the Cathedral of St. Peter. Read more »

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Cathedral gala celebrates St. Peter’s 200th anniversary

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Dialog Editor

 

The 200th anniversary celebration of the Cathedral of St. Peter in Wilmington started last April with a “Come Home to the Cathedral” Mass celebrated by Bishop Malooly, the ninth bishop of the Diocese of Wilmington, who has led the diocese from its historic mother church at 6th and West streets.

On Oct. 6 the cathedral’s bicentennial had its “come to dinner” event, a gala reception and meal for parishioners and friends hosted by Father Leonard Klein, the Cathedral’s administrator, at the Hotel Du Pont. Read more »

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Bishop Malooly leads ecumenical prayer service for peace and justice in communities

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Dialog Editor

“Strip away pride, suspicion and racism so that we may seek peace and justice in our communities,” Bishop Malooly prayed at the Cathedral of St. Peter in Wilmington Sept. 9.

Bishop Malooly delivers he homily during the Ecumenical Prayer Service for the National Day of Prayer for Peace in Our Communities at the Cathedral of St. Peter, Friday, Sept. 9,. (The Dialog/www.DonBlakePhotography.com)

Bishop Malooly delivers he homily during the Ecumenical Prayer Service for the National Day of Prayer for Peace in Our Communities at the Cathedral of St. Peter, Friday, Sept. 9,. (The Dialog/www.DonBlakePhotography.com)

He was leading an ecumenical prayer service the U.S. bishops called for during the National Day of Prayer for Peace in Our Communities.

The national event was scheduled in response to recent “racially-related shootings in Baton Rouge, Minneapolis and Dallas,” Archbishop Joseph E. Kurtz of Louisville, president of the USCCB said in July.

Ministers of other faith communities joined Bishop Malooly at the cathedral for the service, along with priests, deacons, parishioners and students of the diocese.

The bishop said Sept. 9 was picked for the national day of prayers because it’s the feast day of St. Peter Claver, a patron saint of African peoples and the patron of the Knights and Ladies Auxiliary of Peter Claver in the diocese at St. Joseph Church.

Bishop Malooly noted that at St. Peter Claver Parish in Baltimore City, parishioners had started a dialogue with city police and staged peace walks four years before the Freddie Gray tragedy in the area.

“They’ve been doing many things since then to try to bring people together, the bishop said. “It’s something that’s very important.”

The first reading at the service from the Book of Genesis recalled that everything in God’s creation was good, including mankind created in God’s image.

“But then sin came” and rejection came from man, the bishop noted.

The bishop told a personal story exemplifying the fall.

“Ten years ago, I was held up at gunpoint in Baltimore City,” he said. Because he had recently served on a jury, he recognized the gun as a quick-trigger gun.

“I gave the two young fellows, they were 15 and 16, a couple of dollars I had. Then I walked away and heard a gun go off about three blocks later.”

One of the robbers had shot himself in the leg.

The bishop encountered the young men a month later in a courtroom. Then he saw two women crying on a bench “holding hands and sobbing.” They were the boys’ mothers.

“They had tried everything they could to keep them on the narrow and right path, but the drug culture and crime-ridden area of East Baltimore was just too much.

“We have to try to make everything good again,” Bishop Malooly said.

The second reading of the service quoted St. Paul’s words to the Galatians, that through baptism, “there is neither slave nor free person, there is not male and female, for you are one in Christ.”

The message is clear, the bishop said. “It is so important to look at every individual person and not put anybody into a category but to recognize each person is a creation of God and try to make their place in life a little bit better.”

The Gospel from John at the service recounted Jesus telling his disciples that the father would send them the Holy Spirit to “teach you everything and remind you of all I have told you.”

The message not to be afraid and that the Holy Spirit would empower the disciples applies to us in our lives of service and ministry to others, the bishop said.

To build peace in our community, Bishop Malooly recommended three things to do as individuals, as faith communities and as parishes — prayer, conversation and ministry.

“Let us always be conscious of God’s presence and the importance of sharing prayer with one another,” the bishop said.

“Conversation is important. It’s what’s been happening at St. Peter Claver in Baltimore, a longstanding tradition of having the police and citizens speak to each other. Listen and try to understand where people are, what’s difficult for them.”

As for ministry, the bishop noted that “our various congregations within the city do many things. We take care of the poor; we have schools and a hospital not far from here. We have health resources; we have food pantries. We do a lot of these things because we are Christians.”

Bishop Malooly quoted Pope Francis on mission and mercy: “God’s mercy is infectious and must be shared with others. Mercy is a journey that departs from the heart to arrive at the hands.”

‘Too much violence’

Following the service Rev. Bob Hall, executive director of United Methodist Church Peninsula Delaware Conference, hailed the multi-faith service.

“We have to engage in ecumenical activities; it’s important because the Lord has directed us to do it.

“In this cause, bringing the faith community into play on the problems of racism and violence — it can’t be more important. Who’s going to do it, if we don’t?”

Franciscan Father Paul Williams, pastor of St. Joseph’s in Wilmington and head of the diocesan Ministry for Black Catholics, called the prayer service is a good start.

“I’m praying it will be because there’s too much violence here in Wilmington for it being such a small town. If you want to stop something like this, first of all get on your knees and beg for God’s mercy and grace, because it’s his grace that will strengthen us to be able to make a change in our society.”

Communication is crucial in peace making, Father Williams said, “because without dialogue everything remains the same. The community needs to be able to trust the police and the police need to be able to trust the community.”

At St. Joseph’s, the pastor said, “We work with Urban Promise (a citywide ecumenical organization)” to provide programs year-round for young people in the neighborhood.

“Every year we have a major coat drive where we give a coat to the children in the neighborhood. And we just recently had a backpack program for the start of school.”

Brenda Burns, a St. Joseph parishioner and member of the Peter Claver Auxiliary at the parish, said that the community needs “to continue with conversation and dialogue between all the denominations that were here and those that are not here. We have to get control of our neighborhoods. We have to teach our children how to have better coping skills and deal with adversity.

“That’s what it will take — prayer, conversation and implementing a positive plan.”

More dialogue

Creating peace, racial and otherwise is “a complex issue,” said Deacon Robert Cousar, who ministers at St. Joseph’s.

The quest to end violence and racism “has to translate into mutual respect, more dialogue, getting to know people rather than allowing cultural stereotypes to inhibit our relationships and create fear,” said the deacon.

“People avoid the issue, even talking about it. It comes to the point where we need to collaborate. I can’t answer for the community but I know there must be more dialogue than there has been.

“A lot of people have a judgment on the Black Lives Matter movement. But not all the people are racist. Their primary point is that many African-Americans feel devalued, feel that they have no worth in the eyes of the majority.

“We’ve been subject to benign neglect. It’s no longer benign but the [lack] of black jobs in the community, the mass incarceration rate that we’re seeing, the lack of resources for mental health, the three strikes you’re out [sentencing]. How can a person live with no support, no resources whatever.

“We need more people willing to engage and dialogue, willing to reach out to the African-American community without being judgmental when protests arise over police brutality. Many African-Americans are in law enforcement. We rely upon that service and protection and we appreciate their dedication and the risks that they take every day. I just ask people not to be so judgmental but to try to put themselves in other people’s shoes.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Bishop to host ecumenical prayer service for peace today at cathedral

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Bishop Malooly will host an ecumenical prayer service to mark the National Day of Prayer for Peace in Our Communities today at 1 p.m. in the Cathedral of St. Peter in Wilmington.

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) invited all dioceses in the country to observe the Day of Prayer in response to recent violence and racial tension that has arisen in some urban areas of the United States.

angelus-prayer-for-peace-art“It is fitting that brothers and sisters in Christ join together to pray for peace in our communities,” said Bishop Malooly in a statement Aug. 25. “It is my sincere hope that fellow Christians will join to ask God to bring harmony and love to communities that are experiencing conflict and hate. We hope that this prayer gathering will encourage awareness about race relations and related issues and begin dialogues with communities that face tensions and race-related strife.”

In addition to the prayer service, Bishop Malooly has asked that where possible, Catholic churches in Delaware and on Maryland’s Eastern Shore ring their church bells at 3 p.m. today, and he invites churches of other denominations to do so as a sign of solidarity.

The National Day of Prayer for Peace in Our Communities was announced by the USCCB July 21 to promote “peace and healing during this time of great strain on civil society.” September 9 was chosen because it is the feast of St. Peter Claver, a Spanish Jesuit priest who dedicated his life to ministering to African slaves in the Port of Cartagena, Colombia, and is a patron to many in the African American community.

 

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Watch the video of Father Lance Martin’s ordination

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Father Lance Martin was ordained to the priesthood on May 28, 2016 at the Cathedral of St. Peter in Wilmington.

See the video here:

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Cathedral of St. Peter celebrating 200 years

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Dialog editor

 

Spiritual center of the diocese beginning its third century

 

For the 200 years the Cathedral of St. Peter has existed at Sixth and West Streets in Wilmington, the church has “moved” at least twice.

First, in 1868 when the first Catholic church in Wilmington, built in 1816 as part of the Diocese of Philadelphia, was “moved” by Rome into the newly created Diocese of Wilmington. Read more »

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Sister DeSales McNamee, DC, longtime teacher and pastoral associate, dies at 86

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EMMITSBURG, Md. – Sister DeSales McNamee, a Daughter of Charity who served for many years in the Diocese of Wilmington, died Nov. 30 at Villa St. Michael in Emmitsburg. She was 86 and had been a member of the Daughters of Charity of St. Vincent de Paul for 64 years.

McNamee, Sister DeSales (4)Born in Philadelphia, Sister DeSales first came to Wilmington in 1972 as a teacher at St. Mark’s High School, where she remained until 1987. She also served as the local community superior from 1983-87. She returned to the diocese in 1995 to work in parish ministry at the Cathedral of St. Peter. She retired in 2014.

Sister DeSales also served in Maryland, Virginia and New York in education.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated Dec. 5 at 11 a.m. at the Basilica of the National Shrine of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton in Emmitsburg, followed by burial at Sacred Heart Cemetery. Donations in her name can be made to the Daughters of Charity, Province of St. Louise, 4330 Olive St., St. Louis, MO 63018.

A memorial Mass for Sister DeSales will be held Dec. 12 at 10 a.m. at St. Peter’s Cathedral, Sixth and West streets, Wilmington.

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Crossing the thresholds of mercy: Bishop Malooly announces eight diocesan Holy Doors for pilgrims to visit during Year of Mercy

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and Catholic News Service

 

Bishop Malooly will open the observance of the special jubilee Year of Mercy in the Diocese of Wilmington on Dec. 13. by opening the Holy Door at Ss. Peter and Paul Church in Easton, Md.

The door opened by the bishop at the 10:30 a.m. Mass that Sunday in Easton will be one of eight the bishop has selected as Holy Doors at parishes in the diocese’s regional deaneries. Read more »

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Special collection established to benefit the Cathedral

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Dialog reporter

WILMINGTON — The Diocese of Wilmington is launching a new special collection next month to benefit the mother church of the diocese, the Cathedral of St. Peter. The collection will be used for the maintenance and preservation of the church, which was built in 1816.

The collection is scheduled for the weekend of Aug. 22-23 and will be held annually, according to the diocese. Read more »

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From the bishop: Freedom to bear witness, Fortnight for Freedom homily

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The following is the text of Bishop Malooly’s Fortnight for Freedom homily at the July 5 Mass at 11 a.m. in the Cathedral of St. Peter in Wilmington. The Fortnight, June 21-July 4, was the U.S. bishops’ national observance of two weeks of prayer focused on the role of faith in public life and the preservation of religious freedom in our society.

This weekend we celebrate our freedom, our liberty from sin. We do it every time we stand around the altar.

It was through Jesus’ death and resurrection that we have been saved and freed. Read more »

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