On Saturday 7 September the Most Rev. Vincent Nichols, Archbishop of Westminster, led a service of renewal of vows for the permanent deacons of the Diocese at Westminster Cathedral.
In his homily Archbishop Nichols spoke of the vital role of deacons in the life of parishes as well as their position Church generally. Archbishop Vincent talked about the particular vocation deacons have, of proclaiming the Good News, and how ‘the light of the Gospel shines on the Deacons’ in their ministry.
Archbishop Nichols also spoke of Pope Francis’s call for all Catholics to be ‘Missionary Disciples’. For this to happen it is important that we are part of a community of faith, as no one can be a Missionary disciple alone. Indeed, the gift of Christian hope forged through community is, Archbishop Nichols said, one of the greatest contributions we can make to society today.
As well as speaking about the deaconate broadly Archbishop Nichols also reflected on the life of Deacon Timothy Marsh who passed away earlier this month. Deacon Timothy served the people of Hertford parish.
After the Mass the deacons and their families came together to share a meal and talk about their experiences of training and being a deacon. There are currently 20 deacons in the Diocese and three who are training to be permanent deacons.