Today is the last day of 2013, the seventh day in the Octave of Christmas, and the Vigil of the feast of Mary, the Mother of God. Today is as good a time as any to take stock of the previous year. For the Diocese of Knoxville, 2013 has been a historic year in which our 25th anniversary has been celebrated, and will continue to be commemorated in the New Year. Our diocesan Eucharistic Congress on September 13th and 14th brought together some of the best-known Catholic personalities and speakers in the country to worship, pray, and be uplifted with the people of the Diocese of Knoxville.
What was most uplifting about the Congress for many of us was not just that people like Father Robert Barron, Dr. Scott Hahn, and Cardinal Timothy Dolan came to speak with us, but that Catholics and other people of faith came to East Tennessee from all over the United States and Canada to celebrate being the Body of Christ with us. It also gave those of us who live and worship here a chance to unite with our bishop and clergy in a way that we don’t normally get to do every day.
Some of us have been in clerical formation, as I have chronicled here at Life At 25 by sharing just a few of my own experiences in the diaconate formation program for the diocese. We’ve experienced two priestly ordinations, one in Knoxville, and one in Cali, Columbia. There are many more ordinations of priests and deacons in the Diocese of Knoxville to come in the years ahead.
It has been a blessed Christmas season thus far, and a blessed Year for the very blessed people of this diocese.