Reverend Deacon Stephen Puo, the 1st Catholic Priest for the congregation of the Society of St Francis Xavier was ordained at St Joseph’s Parish, Chümoukedima on May 18. (Photo Courtesy: Fr Victor Renthungo)
Kohima, May 18 (MExN): Reverend Deacon Stephen Puo, the 1st Catholic Priest for the congregation of the Society of St Francis Xavier was ordained on May 18 at St Joseph’s Parish, Chümoukedima by most Revered Dr Theodore Mascarenhas, General Secretary CBCI & Auxiliary Bishop of Ranchi.
Fr Victor Renthungo Bishop’s Secretary, Kohima in a press release stated the motto of the new Priest was “Anointed to bring Good News” (Lk 4:18).
Reverend Fr Dominic, the Assistant Priest of St Joseph’s Church anchored the programme while Rev Fr Sajan Joseph, Parish Priest accorded words of welcome to the most Revered Dr Theodore Mascarenhas, invited guests, other government and village Chairman, dignitaries, priests and sisters from different parishes and other participants.
The Bishop in his introduction, said that it was a red letter day for the Catholic Community of St Joseph’s Parish, Chümoukedima to the diocese of Kohima and also for Deacon Stephen Puo, because Deacon Stephen will be ordained a priest, and set apart and consecrated to God’s work and His mission. Dn. Stephen will assume a new role and identity – the role and identity of a Catholic priest.
In his Homily, Bishop also explained the prophetic, pastoral and priestly role of a priest. “Once ordained, the Priest is a marked man. He is impressed with the indelible character of the priesthood. He is a priest forever, even when he plays tennis or goes swimming.”
The bishop exhorted Deacon Stephen to remember that it is to be his life-work to lift up Jesus Christ before men, so that he may draw them unto Him. To be a good priest is the hardest work and the most glorious work on earth, the Bishop added.
It takes love—abundant love and the most patient love and hard work. And above all else, it takes prayer—loving prayer. The true priest lives no longer for himself, but solely to the end that he may hold up the Crucified before men. Bishop concluded his homily by thanking, particularly, the family and relatives of Fr. Stephen for offering him to God and to the Church.
Song by the Choir, special song, tune from the Catholic Community of Thenyizumi Parish, speeches from the Bishop and a family representative were the highlights of the felicitation programme.