Twelve men tell their stories as they prepare to be Ordained
By Malie Hudson
On August 24, Bishop Gerald Barnes will ordain 12 men as one of the largest diaconate classes in the Diocese’s 41-year history.
The deacon candidates come from diverse backgrounds and represent four of the six vicariates. As they approach Ordination day, the men reflected on their journey to the Permanent Diaconate.
Wife: Antonia Quintero
Home Parish: St. John XXIII, Fontana
Occupation: Construction Worker
Ministries of Interest: I will continue to support the catechism and pastoral care outside the parish.
Reflections on Diaconate and wife’s role: After serving in outreach ministries like catechism and bereavement, as well as visiting the sick and elderly, I saw the need of the people and felt the call of God to service.
My wife brought me to these ministries and I fell in love with this service to this day.
She continues to be the coordinator of the ministry, and after Ordination she will continue coordinating bereavement and RCIA catechism.
Wife: Rita Rocha
Home Parish: St. Adelaide, Highland
Occupation: Retired Parole Agent
Ministries of Interest: There is a great need in today’s society to give spiritual assistance to the sick and elderly. We plan to focus on that important ministry and participate in workshops, evangelization and enhance adult formation in parishes.
Reflections on Diaconate and wife’s role: I felt a calling to the ministry in the church so I began to assist wherever help was needed.
I walked into the parish office one day and they needed help answering phones, so I began there.
After a while I volunteered with the food pantry and Easter and Christmas baskets. I found that I enjoyed working with people who needed spiritual uplifting and so when I was asked to participate in restorative justice, I did.
I met my wife when we were 15 and we built a life working together in various public service.
We decided that we needed more formation and we enrolled in CMFP classes.
From there we rediscovered our God- given gifts. My wife who loves writing and studying, became the editor of my papers, and my trusted partner for my spiritual reflection.
Since before we were married, we had been advocates together for social justice.
As the Lord pulled us closer to him, our marriage became more solid and we knew that we had to take the next step in service to the Lord.
Then Father Romy Seleccion came into the office one day and asked me to listen to the Lord calling me to the Diaconate.
I prayed on that and I talked to my family, and I listened better.
The deacon’s role is in service of the Word, the altar, and in charity and justice.
My life had already taken on those roles with my wife as my partner and most people know us as one.
As an ordained minister, our role will be as a deacon couple and we will continue to serve wherever God leads us.