Homily for the Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time

David Oatney Blog: Life at 25

  Deuteronomy 18:15-20 1 Corinthians 7:32-35 Mark 1:21-28 If today’s readings could be said to have a theme, that would be the theme of authority. The first reading today comes in the book of Deuteronomy, and in that book Moses laid out before he died the authority of God over the Israelite people, the authority of the Sacred Priesthood and …

Reflection for Vespers

David Oatney Blog: Life at 25

This past Friday evening (December 5th) was my turn to lead Evening Prayer for our diaconate formation class. For some time now, we’ve been including a reflection by the candidate leading Morning or Evening Prayer. In sharing one of my reflections before on Life At 25, I said that it was rather like “practice preaching” to prepare us for the …

Q&A: Minimum Age For the Permanent Diaconate

David Oatney Blog: Life at 25, Vocations

For today’s Catholic Q&A, I happened to find this question buried in our feedback file that I didn’t know was there, and it is one that many men may be asking who might be in the early stages of discerning a call to the permanent diaconate. What is the normal age or Range for the Diaconate? I have called and …

Pope Francis Asks Forgiveness On Behalf of the Church

David Oatney Blog: Life at 25, Pope Francis

Pope Francis met yesterday with just a few of the many victims of the clerical sex abuse scandal in the Vatican at private audiences in his residence at the St. Martha House. Yesterday, some of the came from Ireland, Great Britain, and Germany-three men and three women. These meetings needed to happen, because the victims of abuse need to know, whoever …

The Season of Change

David Oatney Diocese of Knoxville

Those of us who are former members of Holy Ghost Parish in Knoxville joined current members in receiving a letter in the mail this weekend. In that letter, Monsignor Xavier Mankel, OP, V.G., who has been Vicar General of the Diocese of Knoxville since its foundation in 1988, informed all of us who have been associated with Holy Ghost over …

The Rock of True Love

David Oatney Catechism, Diocese of Knoxville, Vocations

Today, February 14th, is Valentine’s Day, no longer celebrated as a feast of the Universal Church, but it still remains a day known as the patronal feast for lovers, even if the secular world doesn’t usually understand that what they are celebrating is really an old Catholic feast day. Today should be a reminder, however, of the Lord’s blessing on …

The Importance of Retreat

David Oatney Diocese of Knoxville, Prayer, Priesthood, Vocations

The priests of the Diocese of Knoxville are on retreat as I write these lines at Lake Junaluska in North Carolina. The Church asks all of her clergy who are physically able to do so to make a retreat at least once a year, something that their diocese or religious order will often facilitate (here you see Bishop Stika celebrating …

Thoughts and Thanksgiving On Candidacy

David Oatney Diocese of Knoxville, Vocations

On Saturday I was extremely blessed and grateful as Nicole and myself joined 22 of my brother Aspirants for the diaconate for the Rite of Candidacy with Bishop Richard Stika, our formation directors Deacons Tim Elliott, Jim Lawson, and Joe Stackhouse, and many of the Deacons of our diocese and their families. It was certainly a blessed and celebratory occasion, …

Reflection On the Passing of a Priest

David Oatney Diocese of Knoxville, Priesthood

On Thursday I had the opportunity (thanks to my Spiritual Director who was concelebrating and was more than willing to give me a lift) to attend the Funeral Mass for Father Jay Flaherty, a priest of the Diocese of Knoxville who was known as a very powerful preacher indeed. When Nicole and I were married, Father Flaherty celebrated our Nuptial …

Our Lady of the Rosary

David Oatney Diocese of Knoxville, New Evangelization, Prayer, Priesthood, Vocations

Today, October 7th, is the Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary. On this day in 1571, a small and heavily-outnumbered allied Catholic naval force under the command of Don John of Austria defeated a Turk Muhammedian fleet of over 300 ships. This naval battle kept the Western Mediterranean from falling into Muslim hands and preserved the place of Christianity …

Clericalism and Laicism

David Oatney Priesthood, Vocations

Since the beginning of his pontificate, we have seen and heard Pope Francis denounce the evils of clericalism, or the idea that because clergy are part of the clerical state that they ought to be entitled to an exaggerated deference to which their flocks, as fellow Christians, would not be entitled. At its worst, clericalism can lead to a separation …

The Order of Servitude

David Oatney Priesthood, Vocations, Year of Faith

Our beloved Bishop Richard Stika has rightly stated on Twitter regarding his feelings after yesterday’s ordination of four new transitional deacons and the state of the new clergy in the Diocese of Knoxville: Welcome Deacons Colin Blatchford, Tony Budnick, Julian Cardona and Adam Kane. What a blessing to welcome you as a brother deacon! His Excellency is quite correct that …