This Saturday June 11, Rev. Mr. Alexander Albert will be ordained to the priesthood for the Diocese of Lafayette. Deacon Albert was very involved in the Ragin’ Cajun Catholics back with he was a student at UL, before he entered the seminary. In fact his involvement at Wisdom played a large part in his discernment of a vocation to the priesthood. Soon-to-be Fr. Albert has been sponsored by Our Lady of Wisdom and will celebrate his first Mass of Thanksgiving at 3pm on Sunday, June 12 at Wisdom. After his ordination, he will be assigned as Parochial Vicar of St. Peter’s Catholic Church in New Iberia. Please pray for him and for the other men being ordained to the priesthood for the diocese.
It’s almost surreal; approaching ordination as a priest. After 7 years of studying, praying, and preparing to become a priest, it is sometimes strange to think that it will finally happen. I’m still young, so this is so far the most time and effort I’ve ever dedicated to a single goal. Over and over I hear the same question from people in every area of my life: “Are you ready?” Honestly, I’m not sure how to answer that question and how I respond keeps changing. On one level, the immediate reaction is “yes, I’m ready” because I’ve finished all of the academic and canonical requirements, but it doesn’t take long to think to myself, and sometimes say out loud, “can anyone ever be ready for something like this?”
In truth, no. No one can really be ready for something like sharing in the priesthood of Christ himself. But that is just what is so great about this journey that began years ago as a student on UL and even before in more hidden ways. It is precisely this realization of unreadiness and unworthiness that is so crucial to entering into the priesthood. It is in knowing full well that I am not ready that makes me ready. It is admitting my unworthiness that opens me to become worthy. It is knowing these things and knowing that I am called, nonetheless, by God himself to take on a mission that comes from God and returns to God. And really, this tension between my own mortal frailty and the eternal splendor of Christ’s priesthood is central to what it means to carry out this mission. We hold this treasure in earthen vessels and God’s power is made perfect in weakness. It is God’s mercy that makes my service possible and it is God’s mercy that I serve. I know that I will fail many times in this service. But, by the grace of God, even my failures can proclaim the Gospel if only I am ready to admit my faults, my weaknesses, my stubbornness and drown them in the very mercy I am called to proclaim.
So am I ready for that? By the mercy of God, I sure hope so.
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