The Kateri Institute for Lay Ministry Formation is one of the treasures and graces of our diocese. This three year program forms lay ministers for work in their parishes – and beyond. Adults from every walk of life meet one Saturday a month in various parish locations around the diocese. They meet from morning until late afternoon, they read, they study, they pray, they discern. As someone who has observed, and now taught for the program, I stand in awe of what sacrifices these adults make to enrich their faith – and to give so much to God and God’s people.
The program, originally known as the Formation for Ministry Program (FMP), began back in 1984, founded by three incredible people, Fr. Chris DiGiovine, Sister Chris Partisano CSJ, and Denise Simeone, who these days works for the National Catholic Reporter. Today the program is run by the gifted David Amico. You can read more about it at the link in the first sentence.
On Sunday, I had the privilege of being present for the commissioning mass for the Kateri group that has been meeting at St. Edward’s for the past three years. This particular group included four of our own St. Edward’s parishioners. Mary Ann Sekellick, Craig Dempsey, Kathy Masucci, and Don Wilson have spent a lot of time preparing for this beautiful day! Although their names may not be known to you, I’m guessing that if you are a parishioner, you have seen them in one of their ministerial roles.
The mass was presided over by Bishop Ed Scharfenberger, beautiful music was provided by Mary Jo Brue and our music ministry, as well as others, from the Kateri group. There were several other priests present. On the altar with Bishop Ed, were Fr. Pat Butler and Deacon Rit DiCaprio.
The photo slide show gives you some of the feel of the day. If I have neglected to “name” someone in the captions, forgive me – I don’t remember everyone’s name. Please send corrections and updates, and I will amend the post!
Please pray for all of those who completed this course of study. As the bishop noted in his homily, we don’t “graduate,” we are called to continue to follow Jesus. Now our brothers and sisters set out to minister to God’s people in various ways. Please also pray for those who are still in Kateri, pray for those who may feel called to live more deeply in Christ by ministering to others – but who are not yet sure. Please pray for all those who may have thought, like many Biblical heroes before them, “not me!” Please let us pray for one another that we respond and follow Jesus always!
Thank you to one and all who were part of this amazing and joy-filled day! Thanks be to God! If you think that you may be interested in this program, or you know someone who might be, here is a brochure with contact information.