St. Joseph Church
"We recognize the unique role in the Church which belongs to priests and deacons by reason of the sacrament of holy orders and their unique responsibility in the community of believers....To all of them and all other pastoral ministers we stress that the cultivation of the gospel vision of peace as a way of life for believers as a leaven in society should be a major objective." U.S. Catholic Bishops, The Challenge of Peace, 1983 #303
Welcome to Christian Peacemaking in the 21st Century section of the Diaconate section of the St. Joseph Church web page. The purpose of this section is to promote a spirituality for Christian peacemaking based on the Sacred Scriptures, Catholic Tradition and the human sciences.
All of Catholic Christian life is sacramental in character. That is, the Catholic recognizes that God's grace is immediately mediated through all creation and finds its most sublime form in the human person (Gn. 1:26-29; Psalm 8; Jn. 1). Furthermore, in Jesus Christ, the Word made flesh, we have revealed to us that God promises to be with us in our struggle to build a world of justice and peace, and to bring all creation to the glorious state of transformation prefigured in the risen Christ (Col.1:1ff.; I. Cor. 15).
We read in the prophet Isaiah 2:1-4, that nations will come to know the Lord, and as a consequence, war will be no more ! It is obvious that in the present world in which we live this vision of the prophet is still unrealized. The recent nuclear weapons tests of India and Pakistan, the recent test flights of new Pakistani and Iranian ballistic missiles, the increased nuclear improvements of China, the environmental crisis facing the planet, the political and economic problems plaguing most of the developing world, and the continued existence of large numbers of nuclear weapons in the possession of the major nuclear powers for the foreseeable future, remind us that there is much to be done.
It is a fundamental aspect of peace that justice be present, otherwise there really is no peace, only violence in its manifold forms, and an armed truce among real and possible adversaries. We are reminded by Pope Paul VI on this essential truth when he stated, "If you want peace, work for justice." The present local, national and international situation is still devoid of genuine peace. This web page is dedicated to helping deacons and the baptized learn, understand and act on Church teaching concerning justice-seeking and peacemaking in the local, national and international forums.
This web page will include statements, articles, principles, reflections and prayers concerned with a formation of conscience for mature Christian discipleship. It will provide information about the teaching of the Roman Catholic Church that direct the faithful to a holistic witness to the present and future Reign of God. It will also call to attention those individuals who have worked for peace and justice in this world inspired by the Gospel vision and faith in Jesus Christ. Therefore, this web page will offer important material directed toward promoting the "seamless garment" of the Catholic Church's "pro-life" teaching that encompasses the major moral issues of our day. War and peace, the death penalty, economic justice, environmental justice, racism, abortion and human rights are among the major moral and political issues this page is dedicated to offering information and reflection on in the light of Catholic teaching.
"The Church's teaching on international justice and peace is not simply a mandate for a few large agencies, but a challenge for every believer and every Catholic community of faith."
Called to Solidarity, USCC/NCCB
Building peace in the world is a demanding task. There are no easy answers to the manifold problems we face now or will face in the next century. But the disciple of Jesus Christ does not shrink from such formidable difficulties that these challenges present. Instead, empowered by the Holy Spirit, the disciple is willing to accept the cost in faithfulness not worrying about results but only about being faithful. So it is more important to be faithful than successful ! But this does not absolve us from hard-headed thinking and a praxis that is directed toward co-creating with the Lord and one another a world worthy of the love of the Creator as revealed in Jesus Christ our Lord.
"When we get to the point, as we one day will, that both sides know that in any outbreak of hostilities, regardless of the element of surprise, destruction will be both reciprocal and complete, possibly we will have enough sense to meet at the conference table with the understanding that the era of armaments has ended and that the human race must conform its actions to this truth or die."
President Dwight D. Eisenhower
May the Lord's grace and peace be with all of us as we struggle for a more just and peaceful world for ourselves and future generations yet to come.
Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, a new Jerusalem, coming down from heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband; and I heard a great voice from the throne saying, "Behold, the dwelling of God is with all people. He will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself will be with them, and he will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning nor crying nor pain any more, for the former things have passed away." And he who sat on the throne said, "Behold, I make all things new."
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In 1967 Pope Paul VI restored the permanent Diaconate to the Roman Catholic Church. This was consistent with the wishes of the Second Vatican Council 1962-1965.
Permanent Deacons are usually married men past the the age of 35. A period of formation consisting of spiritual and academic formation, lasting four years, as preparation for the reception of Holy Orders. Deacons are members of the clergy. Their ministry is one of service which consists of : service to the Word, service of the altar, and service to charity and justice.
The Deacon serves as a sign of the ministry of service of all the baptized in a life dedicated to a praxis in imitation of Jesus Christ within the context they find themselves assigned.
Most Deacons are employed outside the Church, though some are employed by their parishes on a full time basis.
I am married with three children. I was chair of the Dept., of Theology at Holy Cross High School in Waterbury, Ct. for 12 years, and taught there for sixteen years. I have been adjunct instructor at St. Joseph College in West Hartford in Religious Studies. I served as full time pastoral minister for nine years at St. Joseph Church in Bristol CT. I was appointed to the position of Director of Deacons for the Archdiocese of Hartford by Archbishop Henry Mansell in April 2006.
I have served on the Board of Directors of the Office of Urban Affairs for the Archdiocese of Hartford. I have served as the Chair of the Justice and Peace Commission for the Archdiocese of Hartford. I currently serve on the Interreligious Committee for Understanding of Connecticut for the Archdiocese of Hartford.
I serve as an instructor for the Archdiocesean Catechist Formation Program.
I serve on the Advisory Board for Small Christian Communities for the Archdiocese of Hartford. I am a member of one of the "design teams" for the Small Christian Community booklet "Quest".
I have served as a researcher for SANE/Freeze at the United Nations in N.Y. City. My responsibilities were centered on disarmament and the feasibility of a Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban.
I serve as consultant to the Catholic Conference of Connecticut on the morality of assisted suicide.
I have authored a Group Study Program entitled: Racism: Healing the Body of Christ.
B.A. History, University of Hartford
Ordained: June 10, 1995
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