Catholic Free Press

Catholic Free Press Digital Edition

  • Jun
  • 12

Two men ordained

Posted By June 12, 2014 | 1:20 pm | Lead Story #1
IMG_9464WEB

By Tanya Connor

The realization of what happened at Saturday’s ordination moved the mother of one of the new priests to tears.
Laymen and countrymen called the other new priest their son and rejoiced in the example he sets as the diocese’s first Kenyan clergyman.
Bishop McManus ordained James M. Boland, of St. Bernadette Parish in Northborough, and Charles P. O. Omolo, originally from Kenya, to the priesthood Saturday in St. Paul Cathedral in Worcester.        “At the end of the Mass I looked at Sister Joseph Andrew and she said, ‘He’s a priest forever,’” said Virginia Boland, Father Boland’s mother, who is administrator of religious education at St. Bernadette’s. “I said, ‘I know,’ and we both started crying. Joy. That about sums it up.”
Sister Joseph Andrew is one of the foundresses of the Dominican Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Eucharist in Ann Arbor, Mich. Father Boland’s sister Meaghan, Sister Pio Maria, is to take her first vows in the order Aug. 1. They both attended the ordination, as did Mother Mary Assumpta, another of the foundresses.
Father Omolo’s father, John Omollo Milugo, and brother, Benedict Otieno Milugo, came from Kenya for the ordination.
Bishop McManus expressed thanks that God called these men, and hope that the congregation’s prayers would strengthen them in their service to God’s people. He instructed the congregation and the men themselves about what their priestly ministry will entail. He thanked their parents for giving their sons to the Church and asked everyone to pray for vocations.
Allan Waigera, chairman of the Kenyan Catholic community of the Diocese, expressed thanks for the space for Africans to worship as they feel comfortable, and said it is very refreshing and satisfying to see one of their own ordained.
“We are happy, not only as Africans, but the entire Church, because a priest belongs to the whole Church,” said John Maina, former president of the Kenyan community at St. Peter Parish and St. Andrew Mission in Worcester.
“I don’t know if there’s anything more exciting than to watch a young man you’ve seen grow up … come to that point of realizing what his vocation is and moving forward on that commitment of saying ‘yes’ to God,” said Lynn Wehner. She and her family came in from Cheshire, Conn., for the ordination of Father Boland, whom they knew when they were members of St. Bernadette’s for 12 years.
“It’s going to be such a blessing to watch him serve with the people of this diocese,” she said.
Herman Millet, Knights of Columbus vocations representative for the diocese, rejoiced that Father Boland’s sister was able to come from the convent for his ordination and noted that the Bolands were honored as Massachusetts Knights of Columbus Family of the Year a couple years ago.
The African choir and traditional African dance reminded Mr. Millet, of St. Luke the Evangelist Parish in Westborough, that “our universal Catholic Church was here today in the singing and dancing.”
“Everything was wonderful – the Knights of Columbus …,” mused Agnita Knott, who said she was honored to receive an invitation to the ordination from Father Omolo. “Everything was coordinated perfectly – the altar servers.” And the priests were all smiling, she said.
She said a bus came from St. Gabriel the Archangel Parish in Upton, where he served, but she and friends drove in early to get a seat near the front. St. Gabriel’s Women’s Club was putting on a reception after his first Mass there Sunday, she said.
“We just love him,” she said. “I was up baking last night. And I’m not a baker.”

‘I don’t know if there’s anything more
exciting than to watch
a young man you’ve seen grow up … come to that point of realizing what his vocation is and moving forward on that
commitment of saying ‘yes’ to God.’

– Lynn Wehner