Friday, August 7, 2020
“You are a priest forever, in the line of Melchizedek.”

Those words -- from Psalm 110 in the Old Testament -- became a reality on Aug. 1 as two transitional deacons, Joshua Cochrac and Joseph Robinson, became the newest priests for service in the Catholic Diocese of Cleveland.

After nine years of study and formation, Auxiliary Bishop emeritus Roger Gries ordained them during a Mass in the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist in downtown Cleveland. “The day is finally here,” the bishop said.

Alexander Clark, Cameron Popik, Alexander Spenik and James Winings will move another step closer to their priestly ordination when they are ordained as transitional deacons on Aug. 7.

Bishop Martin Amos, retired bishop of Davenport, Iowa will celebrate the invitation-only Mass. The liturgy will be streamed live at 7 p.m. on the Catholic Diocese of Cleveland website.

The men are in their fifth year of formation for the priesthood at Saint Mary Seminary and Graduate School of Theology in Wickliffe.

The final countdown is underway for the 2020 FEST, which begins at 3 p.m. Aug. 9.

Normally, tens of thousands of people would descend on the Center for Pastoral Leadership in Wickliffe for the daylong festival of faith, family and fun. Even the coronavirus pandemic couldn’t stop The FEST, which was redesigned this year so everyone can enjoy it from the comfort of their homes.

Father Bob Stec, FEST coordinator, suggested that people reflect on the song “We are the World,” which was released 35 years ago to bring help and hope to some troubled spots in the world.

As the opening of the new school year draws closer, a group of parents rallied at noon today outside the headquarters of the Catholic Diocese of Cleveland urging school officials to allow students to return to in-person learning this fall.

About 75 people – mainly parents and students gathered on the sidewalk outside Cathedral Square Plaza on East Ninth Street in downtown Cleveland. The group was respectful. They wore face masks and many carried signs with messages such as “Be not afraid – Open our schools in person 5 days a week.”

What is your domestic church like? Do you need ideas on how to create one?

Watch Greg Coogan secretary for catechetical formation for the Catholic Diocese of Cleveland, talk about ways people can instill devotion into their lives, talk to their children about social distancing and help their neighbors during the coronavirus pandemic. All ordinary, everyday things that anyone can easily incorporate into their family life.

WASHINGTON Archbishop José H. Gomez of Los Angeles and president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, issued the following statement in solidarity with Lebanon after the explosion in the Port of Beirut:

“The world watched with shock and horror the catastrophic explosion in the Port of Beirut Tuesday. Over 100 have died, thousands are injured, and the suffering has only begun to be told.

And finally...
Did you know that this week marks the 75th anniversary of the atomic bombings of Hiroshima (Aug. 6, 1945) and Nagasaki, Japan (Aug. 9, 1945)? The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops released a reflection mourning with the Japanese people for the innocent lives that were taken and the generations that continue to suffer the public health and environmental consequences of the attacks, which helped end World War II. The USCCB also shared resources for study, prayer and action that the faithful can use in observing the anniversaries.

Father Don Dunson will address the next meeting of Theology on the Rocks West at 7 p.m. Aug. 10 on Zoom. The online program is limited to 90 participants who must register in advance.

The feast of the Transfiguration of the Lord originated after news of the Crusaders’ July 22, 1456 defeat of the Turks at Belgrade reached Rome on Aug. 6. Pope Callistus III placed the feast on the Roman calendar the following year and it is celebrated on Aug. 6.
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