Six Third Year students from the Pontifical Beda College in Rome were ordained Deacon by Cardinal James Harvey in the college chapel on Wednesday 17 June. Cardinal Harvey is Archpriest of the Basilica of St Paul’s Outside the Walls, where the Beda’s diaconate ordinations normally take place – but these are not normal times.
Cardinal Harvey referred to the candidates for ordination as the ‘Covid Deacons’ and because of the pandemic, the ordinations took place without guests and with strict protocols of masking and sanitising. Although no guests were present the college community marked the occasion with a celebratory lunch in the college’s refectory.
Among the new Deacons was Chris Butler from the Leeds Diocese. Before embarking on his studies for the priesthood Chris was a long-standing and well-known member of the congregation at Leeds Cathedral. He comes from a medical background and is a key member of the medical team that accompanies the annual Diocesan Pilgrimage to Lourdes. He will be returning to the Diocese in the near future to take up a parish-based pastoral appointment during the summer months before returning to Rome for his final year of studies in the autumn.
A gallery of photos from Wednesday’s ordinations is available on the homepage of the Beda College’s website https://bedacollege.org/
Congratulations to Chris and we offer our prayers for all the new Deacons and wish them well for the final stage of their journey towards priesthood.