By Fr. Guillermo Trevino
About a year and a half ago, I received a call to orders letter from Bishop Martin Amos for priesthood ordination. It brought me a lot of joy that what seemed so far away when I started was becoming a reality. The next part was planning a Mass of Thanksgiving at my home parish, St. Mary’s in Moline, Ill. I called the parish and was reminded that I needed a letter in good standing as the Mass was to be celebrated in a different diocese than the diocese I was to be ordained in. I also needed some helpers; Father Kevin Anstey and Father Corey Close would concelebrate. A former diocesan seminarian who now is a novice monk at Conception Abbey, Nick Marie, would be a server.
I want to focus on this year’s ordination class, though. Deacon Ross Epping, who will be ordained a priest June 4, told me that he wanted to be at my first Mass. I told him he’d need a letter of good standing as well and that he was to be Deacon of the Word, which meant he’d read the Gospel in Spanish. This was to be his first Mass as a deacon, as well. I am honored he came to the Spanish Mass at St. Mary’s in Moline because he wanted to serve at my first Mass. He brought his family and friends to a small little parish and it meant the world to me to have him there. It shows you what kind of person he is, giving up his first Mass as a deacon to serve as a deacon at my first Mass as a priest. He will make a great priest.
My old pastor, Father Fredi Gomez Torres, warned me that he got nervous at his first Mass, so it was very important to have an MC (Master of Ceremonies for the Mass). I asked Chris Weber, who will be ordained a deacon June 4 at Sacred Heart Cathedral in Davenport, to be MC and he agreed. I am so lucky that he did, as I forgot just about every single part of the Mass. His attention to detail saved me from a complete disaster. My first Mass was the Feast of Corpus Christi. Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament was held after the Mass, which I blanked out on. Chris just told me, “That’s OK, Father, just go around the church.” Chris was the MVP of the day as they say in sports and he will do a wonderful job as a deacon and, God willing, a priest.
Dan Dorau will also be ordained a deacon June 4. He always asks great questions. His deacon summer assignment is very similar to what I had when I was ordained a deacon and he was asking some great questions. I told him not to worry and just let God take care of it. Although I do not know Dan as well as the other two men to be ordained, I try to keep in touch. He always has a strong presence and love for the Lord, and I am grateful for his ordained ministry as well.
Which leads me to an invitation: three wonderful people will be ordained June 4 at 10 a.m. at Sacred Heart Cathedral. Please go and support our future! Many of my friends and family told me when I was ordained last year, “I’ve never seen so many priests and deacons before.” Even some non-Catholic friends said, “It was a beautiful service.” Your presence will mean a great deal to them. It did for me last year.
(Fr. Trevino serves in solidum at St. Alponsus and St. Mary parishes in Davenport and St. Peter Parish in Buffalo.)