A Blessed Year for a Blessed Diocese

David Oatney Catholic Blogs, Diocese of Knoxville, Priesthood, Year of Faith

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 …

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, …

Saturday Afternoon at the Eucharistic Congress

David Oatney Eucharistic Congress

After Dr. Hahn’s talk Saturday morning, Nicole and I did our best to meander our way to the lunch tables and outside to eat. After lunch, we went inside and made our way back to the room known as “Hall B” where Father Robert Barron was to speak and Eucharistic Adoration would take place. I took the time to go …

Friday Night and Saturday Morning At the Eucharistic Congress

David Oatney Eucharistic Congress

Friday and Saturday were the big days here in the Diocese of Knoxville, as our long-awaited 25th Anniversary Eucharistic Congress finally came to fruition, and what a special Christ-filled weekend it truly was. Over and over again, our speakers mentioned how hospitable everyone was, and it is certainly true. The Congress was well-organized and went off better than anyone could …

The Future of the Diaconate

David Oatney Vocations

A story from yesterday’s National Catholic Register said that many of our nation’s bishops are extremely pleased with the progress of the permanent diaconate in the United States. The Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate has been able to glean that there are around 18,000 permanent deacons serving in the United States, and that is based on the dioceses …

Reflection On Orders and the Church Over Pizza

David Oatney Priesthood, Vocations

Regulars here at Life At 25 may recall that I wrote a post on pastoral humility which featured Father Erik Richtsteig as part of a post on “Two Lessons in Humility” with regard to the way that Father Erik handled himself and cared for his shell-shocked flock after a shooting which took place at his parish, St. James the Just, …

Fostering An Attitude of Simplicity

David Oatney New Evangelization, Priesthood, Vocations, Year of Faith

Pope Francis made some very interesting remarks in recent days to a group of seminarians and consecrated religious novices who were visiting the Vatican as part of their Year of Faith observances, and his words have produced varied reaction from priests and religious around the world. The Holy Father told the assembled seminarians and novices that they should maintain humility …

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 …

The Diaconate Class of 2007

David Oatney Catechism, Vocations, Year of Faith

Six years ago this past Sunday (June 9th) a historic event in the history of the Diocese of Knoxville took place, one so historic that the men who participated in it directly remember the date each year. It was the day the first class of permanent deacons in the history of the Diocese of Knoxville was ordained by then-Bishop (now …

The Laying On of Hands

David Oatney Catechism, New Evangelization, Prayer, Priesthood, Vocations, Year of Faith

Since I wrote about it last week, Deacon Christopher Manning is now Father Christopher Manning, having been ordained to the priesthood-the presbyterate-by Bishop Stika this past Saturday. I regret that I was not able to attend, although Nicole and I had originally planned to do so. I’m praying to be able to attend the ordination of four new transitional deacons …

Corpus Christi, the Feast of Who We Are

David Oatney Catechism, New Evangelization, Prayer, Priesthood, Vocations, Year of Faith

Today is the feast of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ, which is often referred to by its Latin term, Corpus Christi. Many Catholics tend to overlook today’s feast, coming as it does two weeks after the Easter Season. In my own mind, however, today’s feast is perhaps one of the most important of the Church year, because it …

Pentecost is Coming, and the Diocese Is On Fire

David Oatney New Evangelization, Priesthood, Vocations, Year of Faith

Three days ago the National Catholic Register ran a story by Stephen Beale about the increasing numbers of Catholics in the South, and how our faith, which was once alien in this part of the country, is becoming the increasing norm. Indeed, the article rightly pointed out that our brothers and sisters in Northern dioceses and in many places on the …

Faith Is a Gift Worth Sharing Through Love

David Oatney New Evangelization, Vocations, Year of Faith

Please forgive me for using the beginning of this post as a means to introduce you once again to myself. Some of you might remember that I wrote a post back in January on the “The Triple Meaning of the Epiphany,” and I’ll be sharing my thoughts with you in the days, weeks, and months ahead on the Year of …