Seminarians Steven DiMassimo and Tyler Sparrow became transitional deacons May 23 at Holy Name of Jesus Cathedral in Raleigh. Due to the coronavirus, the Mass was limited to family and essential personnel. About a thousand viewers watched the Mass, which was streamed live on YouTube.
The rite of ordination to the diaconate included the presentation of the candidates by vocations director Father Philip Tighe, the election (or acceptance of request) by Bishop Luis Rafael Zarama and the six promises of the elect.
Father Herber J. Sperger, director of spiritual formation at St. Charles Borromeo Seminary, where DiMassimo and Sparrow studied, also attended.
Bishop Luis said the main function of the deacon in the church is to serve the people in the best way possible.
“The key is to approach the people you serve to recognize them and their needs first,” said Bishop Luis. “Go to peripheries, be with the people and learn from them what they need, and what they need is how you approach and love them.”
DiMassimo is a member of St. Luke the Evangelist Church in Raleigh and attended Franciscan University of Steubenville, Ohio, and worked as a FOCUS (Fellowship of Catholic University Students) missionary at the University of Connecticut.
Sparrow is a member of Sacred Heart Church in Dunn and attended Seton Home Study School.
After Mass, Monsignor David Brockman remarked that in all the years he has attended ordinations, he has never seen a candidate smile as big as Tyler throughout the entire Mass.
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