May 15, 2017

Nine permanent deacons to be ordained May 20

Staff report

Diaconate Candidates Spring 2017

(IObserve photo/courtesy of Diaconate Office, Diocese of Springfield)

SPRINGFIELD – Nine men will be ordained May 20 as permanent deacons for the Diocese of Springfield. The ceremony will take place at 11 a.m. at St. Michael’s Cathedral in Springfield. They have met twice a week at the Elms College in Chicopee as part of their formation and will join 82 active deacons in the diocese.

Those scheduled for ordination are Gilbert St. George-Sorel of St. Mary Parish in Ware; Gerald Solitario of St. Thomas the Apostle Parish in West Springfield; Adalberto Santiago-Martinez of Our Lady of Guadalupe Parish in Holyoke; Lino Sanmiguel of St. Anthony of Padua Parish in Chicopee; Jose Rivera of Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Parish in Springfield; David Picard of St. John the Evangelist Parish in Agawam; Rodney Patten Jr. of Holy Family Parish in South Deerfield; John Fox of Divine Mercy Parish in Three Rivers; and David Bergeron of St. Patrick Parish in South Hadley.

St. George-Sorel is a resident engineer for an environmental company. He and his wife, Lauretta, have three children.

Solitario is an application and development operations manager. He and his wife, Margaret, have four children. Their eldest child, Dominican Brother John Mark Solitario, is in formation to become a priest.

Santiago-Martinez is an aerospace technician.

Sanmiguel is a bus driver in Holyoke. He also is the administrator and host of Voz Catolica, the radio ministry of the Diocese of Springfield. He and his wife, Alina, have three children.

Rivera is a delivery driver. He and his wife, Margarita, have four children.

Picard is the president of Summit Careers. He and his wife, Sandra, have two children.

Patten Jr. is retired. He and his wife, Linda, have six children.

Fox teaches Spanish at Quaboag Regional School District in Warren and is chairman of the foreign language department.

Bergeron is a maintenance man. He and his wife, Deborah, have one son.

The permanent diaconate ministry, which has its roots in early scripture, began in 1983 when the late Bishop Joseph Maguire ordained 19 men as the first deacons in the diocese.  The permanent deacons are involved in charitable work, preach the Word of God, and assist at the Eucharist. He also can officiate at Benediction, baptize solemnly, bless marriages and preside at wakes, funerals and burials.

Deacons can be married but once ordained they cannot remarry if their wife dies. They are not paid.