Pangan, Valencia ordained to the Order of the Diaconate

Two of Guam’s four seminarians at St. Patrick’s take step closer to priesthood

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Candidates for the diaconate put their hands on the Bible as they proclaim their personal, public profession of faith in front of the community at St. Patrick’s Seminary on Apr. 3. Fourth and third from the right, respectively, are Guam’s very own seminarians, Deacon Junee Valencia and Deacon Ron Pangan, newly-ordained through the laying on of hands and the invocation of the Holy Spirit by Archbishop Michael Jude Byrnes on Apr. 27 at St. Pius Catholic Church in Redwood City, California. (Photo courtesy of St. Patrick’s Seminary & University)

By John Michael D. Pineda
Umatuna Si Yu’os

Deacon Junee Valencia

The Archdiocese of Agaña congratulates two of its seminarians who were scheduled to be ordained to the Sacred Order of the Diaconate on Saturday, Apr. 27 at St. Pius Catholic Church in Redwood City, California.

As third-year seminarians for our archdiocese, Honorio “Ron” Valeavilla Pangan and Junee Valencia were to be ordained along with fellow seminarians Ian Quito and Benjamin Rosado of the Archdiocese of San Francisco. They were scheduled to be ordained through the laying on of hands and the invocation of the Holy Spirit by our own Archbishop Michael Jude Byrnes. Upon their ordination, they will be incardinated clergy of our archdiocese.

Deacon Ron Pangaan

Dereck Delgado and William Mamangun are the other two seminarians from our archdiocese who are currently studying for the priesthood at St. Patrick’s Seminary & University in Menlo Park, California.

Guam’s archdiocesan vocations director Father Richard Kidd and Vicar for the Clergy Father Mike Crisostomo also traveled with the archbishop to attend the ordination ceremony.

Earlier on Apr. 3, the candidates for the diaconate at St. Patrick’s Seminary made their profession of faith in front of the community at Vespers. As prescribed, canon law requires those to be promoted to the order of the diaconate to make a personal, public profession of faith with their hands on the Bible as a step to their diaconate ordination.

In a news article on “Catholic San Francisco,” the official news organization of the Archdiocese of San Francisco, St. Patrick’s Seminary & University spokesperson Stephen Terlizzi explained, “The transitional diaconate is not really a step toward [priestly] ordination, but rather an ordination itself into the Order of Deacons,” one of the three Major Orders in the Catholic Church.

The first deacons were ordained by the Apostles in the Acts of the Apostles chapter 6. “The apostles established this order in Acts 6:1-6 so that a group of men could concentrate on the ministry to the widows while they focused on prayer and the ministry of the word,” said Terlizzi. “Deacons today (whether permanent deacons or transitional deacons) are tasked with the proclamation of the Gospel, service in the liturgy, and administration of charitable works.”

“Even after becoming ordained a priest, the deacon functions remain as an important part of a joyous life as a priest,” Terlizzi said. “There are several differences between the transitional and permanent deacons, such as the promise of celibacy in the case of married permanent deacons, the tradition of wearing clerical attire for transitional deacons, and daily requirements in praying the liturgy of the hours – permanent deacons only need to offer morning and evening prayers.”

Congratulations once again to our newly-ordained Deacon Ron and Deacon Junee. Let us continue to pray for them and those who aspire to be priests, deacons, and religious of our island.