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Archives Bishop LaValley ordains Deacon Lukas Gruber

July 6, 2022

By Darcy Fargo

POTSDAM – “What an absolutely beautiful day for the Church in the North Country,” said Bishop Terry R. LaValley, as he delivered his homily during the ordination of seminarian Lukas Gruber to the diaconate. “Lukas, you have accepted the invitation to give yourself to Christ and to enter the journey of life with strong faith and a whole lot of hope, choosing to leave everything to follow Christ in total service to him and to our sisters and brothers. Soon you will be advanced to the Order of the Deacon as a minister of word and of charity. Our presence here this morning attests to our resolve to hold you in prayer. Today, tomorrow, every day.”

Deacon Gruber was ordained by Bishop LaValley on June 25 at St. Mary’s Church in Potsdam.

“You know we see it at Mass often, maybe without paying a whole lot of attention: Before the deacon proclaims the Gospel, he turns, and either kneeling or standing, bows before the provider to receive a blessing,” Bishop LaValley said. “The deacon is also bowing to the Gospel he will proclaim, showing in this way his own obedient submission to God’s word. Lukas, as a minister of the word, you proclaim the saving good news of Jesus Christ. Let he be foundation of the lives of each and of all who hear your words. The blessing the provider gives to the deacon is ‘may the Lord be in your heart and on your lips that you may worthily proclaim the Gospel.’ You know the deacon cannot proclaim the Gospel worthily with his lips unless he first possesses it in his heart. On this, the memorial of the Immaculate Heart of the Blessed Virgin Mary, we remember that Mary conceived the Word of God in her heart before conceiving him in her womb and bringing him into the world. She then treasured in her heart all things having to do with her son. Her motherly heart was pierced because of her obedience to the father. Like Mary, the deacon must conceive, treasure and yes, even suffer, the word of God in his heart.”
Bishop LaValley reminded Deacon Gruber that his life must reflect the Gospel.

“It’s vitally important that you possess a lifestyle in conformity with the words you preach so that the faith you profess may be conformed by the manner whereby you give witness to God’s presence,” he said.

He also noted that living his ministry will help Deacon Gruber grow in his relationship with the Lord.

“Lukas, you know that your ordination to the diaconate imprints on you a sacred and permanent character,” Bishop LaValley said. “You will be sanctified by the very ministry you carry out – the ministry of the Word, sacraments and charity. As you enable your sisters and brothers to grow in their relationship with Jesus Christ, your own will grow in that process. You see, you will open yourself up to the grace of this sacred order through your praying, your preaching and your celebrating of the sacraments and serving our sisters and brothers. You will be strengthened and renewed by and through your ministry. It doesn’t mean you won’t ever get tired or even frustrated, but it does mean that you will never, ever get bored as long as you remember this sacred gift you have received and share.”

At the ordination Mass, Connor Cummings ad Linda MacDougall served as lectors. Deacon Richard Burns proclaimed the Gospel. Deacon Brian Dwyer presented the candidate, and Father Christopher C. Carrara, diocesan Vicar for Clergy and director of Vocations and Seminiarans, read the “election of the candidate.”

After he was ordained through the laying on of hands by the bishop and the Prayer of Ordination, Deacon Gruber was vested in the stole and dalmatic by Father Joseph Giroux.

He was then handed the Book of the Gospels by Bishop LaValley, and the bishop and deacon representatives offer a “fraternal kiss of peace,” a hug, to the newly ordained “as a welcome into the Order of Deacons.”

Deacon Gruber is currently serving at St. Mary’s in Ticonderoga and Our Lady of Lourdes in Schroon Lake while on summer assignment. He will return to Pontifical College Josephinum in Columbus, Ohio, in August to complete his seminary studies in preparation of ordination to the priesthood next year.

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