Deaconate Ordination for Four Vietnamese Jesuits in Saigon

    “Every Mass is a chance for us to give thanks to God, and today we must be more thankful because of the holy order of deaconate that four Jesuits are going to receive.” – said The Most Reverend Bishop Joseph Dang Duc Ngan, Prelate of Da Nang Diocese, in the Mass of Ordination in Jan 20th, 2017.

After years of religious life and of philosophical and theological studies, four following Jesuits were called to the holy order of deaconate:

  1. Peter Tran Vinh Danh, S.J.
  2. Thomas Aquinas Nguyen Khanh Duy, S.J.
  3. Joseph Nguyen Hai Dang, S.J.
  4. Anthony Nguyen Huu Khanh, S.J.

In his homily, Bishop Joseph Dang Duc Ngan addressed the congregation, and especially the candidates, of the essential mission of a deacon. It is nothing but service. He pointed out three dimensions of deaconate service: minister of Sacred Mysteries, of the Word, and of charity.

As a minister of sacred mysteries, a deacon needs to be rooted in God and overwhelmed by His grace. As a minister of the Word, he must be sunk in the Word and has his own personal experience of the Word of God. And he must also be familiar with the Love of God in Jesus Christ in order to be a minister of charity.

More than once, Bishop Joseph Dang called on those to be ordained to get out of their self-love to commit themselves for the altruistic love and service. Only by this way can they be good ministers of God in the Church.

The ordinands, while kneeling before the Bishop and placing their joined hands between the Bishop’s hands, promised their obedience to the Church, presented by their legal ordinaries and superiors.

Before receiving the holy order, the ordinands prostrated, while the whole congregation asked the Saints to intercede for them.

Bishop Joseph Dang laid his hands upon the ordinands in silence and then began the prayer of ordination – the most important part of the ceremony.

From that time, the ordinands became the ministers of Jesus Christ and took part in the ecclesial hierarchy of the Church.

“Believe in what you read, teach what you believe, and practice what you teach,” Bishop Joseph Dang told the new deacons as he granted them the Sacred Scripture of which they were going to be servants.

Fr. Vincent Pham Dinh Khoan, S.J, on behalf of Fr. Provincial Vincent Pham Van Mam, S.J. co-celebrated the Mass and gave thanks to the Bishop. Almost 200 Jesuit priests and brothers, some religious and lay people also joined the Mass.