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In Thanksgiving for Two Friends

May 19, 2009
As you may have already read, from May 7-10 I had the privilege of travelling to Houston, Texas. It was a time of celebration and thanksgiving for two great friends of Salt and Light, Chris Valka and Morgan Rice. Both have been journeying with the Basilian Fathers for several years now. The weekend started with the final vows of Morgan on Friday night, promising chastity, poverty and obedience to God and his Congregation for the rest of his life. Both Chris and Morgan entered the Order on Saturday morning, the first as a priest, the second as a deacon. It was the first time I was witnessing a 'double ordination' of this kind. The celebration was truly beautiful and liturgically impeccable!
It was great to meet the people who helped our friends to discern their vocation and shaped them to become who they are. Parents, teachers, mentors, confreres and good friends; those people God put on their path. That is what the newly ordained shared with me after Chris’s first mass last Sunday, in the beautiful Chapel of St. Basil at St. Thomas University. In his homily, Fr. Thomas Rosica, CSB, who, while assuming is role at S+L, was also the Master of Scholastics for the Congregation until 2006, said to both ordained that they could not escape the knife of the vine grower. The homily is worth reading on the CSB's website.
Whether it leads to a vocation to priesthood, marriage or religious life, we all have people who walked with us and had a great influence on who we are. Who are your role models? How did they shape who you are?

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