Fifteen candidates who are studying for the Fall River Permanent Diaconate have been installed as acolytes at a Mass celebrated by Most Reverend George W. Coleman, Bishop of Fall River, on Wednesday, June 6, 2012, at 7:00 p.m., at St. Mary Church, in New Bedford.
Assisting Bishop Coleman, was Reverend Monsignor John J. Oliveira, Director of the Permanent Diaconate Program. Deacon Frank Fantasia, Assistant Director for Candidate Formation, and Deacon Arthur LaChance, Assistant Director for Continuing Formation served as Deacons.
The ministry of acolyte is the second of two ministries which candidates must receive and exercise as part of their preparation for ordination as a permanent deacon.
These candidates are the eighth class for the Permanent Diaconate of the Diocese and have been in the formation program for three years. They will continue in one more year of academic and pastoral formation before ordination as deacons:
Bruce J. Baxter, Corpus Christi, East Sandwich; Eduardo M. Borges, St. Anthony of Padua, New Bedford; Brendan W. Brides, Christ the King, Mashpee; Robert M. Craig, Holy Family, East Taunton; Timothy E. Flaherty, St. Stanislaus, Fall River; Ralph J. Guerra, St. Margaret, Buzzards Bay; Paul J. Harney, Christ the King, Mashpee; Gary M. John, Holy Trinity, Fall River; Paul R. Levesque, St. Bernard, Assonet; Frank R. Lucca, St. Dominic, Swansea; Thomas J. McMahon, Our Lady Queen of Martyrs, Seekonk; David C. Murphy, St. Patrick, Wareham; Gary A. Porter, St. John the Evangelist, Attleboro; Lawrence D. St. Pierre, St. Joseph, Attleboro; Wilfred R. Varieur, St. Theresa, South Attleboro
Priests were invited to join the pastors of the candidates, priests who are their Spiritual Directors, and Formation Instructors, in concelebrating the Mass. Deacons and Wives from the diocese and the families of the candidates were invited to join in prayer at this Mass.