Our website is made possible by displaying online ads to our visitors.
Please consider supporting us by whitelisting our site.

Three men ordained transitional deacons for Diocese of Arlington

First slide
First slide
First slide
First slide
First slide
First slide
First slide
First slide
First slide
First slide
First slide
First slide
First slide
Previous Next

Bishop Michael F. Burbidge ordained three men to the transitional diaconate at the Cathedral of St. Thomas More in Arlington June 1. The new deacons, surrounded by family and friends at the ordination, are Peter M. McShurley, Joseph F. Moschetto and Charles C. Pavlick. 

The diaconate candidates sat with their families and were called by name to stand before Bishop Burbidge, who asked Father Michael C. Isenberg, director of vocations, if the candidates were worthy. There was a resounding “yes” with applause from those gathered to support the deacons.

“Today is one of great joy for you Peter, Joseph and Charles, for your parents, families, friends, for me as your bishop and for this diocese because, through the grace of God, you will soon be ordained and sent forth in ministry to the church as deacons and, God-willing, one day soon as priests,” Bishop Burbidge said during his homily. “You are reminded today, through the prophet Jeremiah, that it is the Lord who has called and chosen you, the One who formed you in the womb. You are also assured by Jesus in today’s Gospel, that the One who sends you forth will be with you always.” 

Bishop Burbidge invited the candidates to “imitate Jesus, who in humble service, washed the feet of his disciples. Bring his healing love to the suffering, the poor and our most neglected brothers and sisters. Be known for your availability to God’s holy people."

He encouraged them to listen to the advice of Pope Benedict XVI about the Paschal candle. “He said, ‘The candle shines inasmuch as it is burnt up. It gives light, inasmuch as it gives itself.’ This is the life and service you pledge to embrace, as you make your commitment to celibacy, as you promise respect and obedience to your bishop and to be a man of fervent prayer including the faithful praying of the Liturgy of the Hours.”

After the homily, Bishop Burbidge asked the candidates to declare their intention to be deacons and fulfill the duties of their office. Each of them knelt and placed their hands within those of the Bishop. They pledged obedience to him and his successors. 

As the Litany of Saints was sung by the choir, the candidates lay prostrate for the Litany of Supplication. After the litany, each candidate approached Bishop Burbidge and knelt before him for the laying on of hands. Then, Bishop Burbidge recited the prayer of ordination. 

The deacons were vested with a stole and dalmatic. Capuchin Father Thomas G. Weinandy vested Deacon McShurley; Father William P. Saunders vested Deacon Moschetto; and the Very Rev. Father Andrew J. Fisher vested Deacon Pavlick. 

Father Fisher knew Deacon Pavlick as a seminarian, and through his work at St. Ambrose Church in Annandale last summer. “I had the chance to work with him in all different areas of pastoral ministry and I had a chance to see him become stronger in his faith and in his vocation,” he said.  “I’m very honored that I could vest him today.”

After vesting, the deacons knelt before Bishop Burbidge to receive the Book of the Gospels. “Receive the Gospel of Christ, whose herald you have become. Believe what you read, teach what you believe, and practice what you teach,” said Bishop Burbidge. 

Attending the ordination of her son, Martha Pavlick said the family is thrilled beyond words. “We have four married children and my husband says that now all our children are in a committed relationship,” she said. “I thought for quite a while he would make a good priest. The judge he first clerked for said he would make a wonderful priest.” 

Holly McShurley expressed her gratitude. “I’m very grateful to God and proud of my son,” she said. “I’m grateful to our Bishop for how he has cared for these seminarians. It’s wonderful to be in communion with the other families.”

Deacon McShurley is assigned to the cathedral. Deacon Moschetto will serve at St. Anthony of Padua Church in Falls Church, and Deacon Pavlick is assigned to St. Timothy Church in Chantilly.

Father Matthew H. Zuberbueler, pastor of St. Anthony, said parishioners will joyfully welcome Deacon Moschetto. “I expect that the enthusiasm and zeal of a young deacon on his way, please God, to becoming a priest, will raise the spirits of all of our parishioners and will likely inspire and nourish the call Our Lord is giving to our young people,” he said. “Deacon Moschetto will discover the unique gifts of an active and diverse community. Most of all I look forward to hearing how the Holy Spirit speaks through his eager preaching.”

© Arlington Catholic Herald 2019

@eelliottACH