Joseph Kuharski, a member of St. Charles Borromeo in St. Anthony who is in his second year of theological studies for the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, was among 55 seminarians instituted to the ministry of acolyte on March 4 during a Mass at the Pontifical North American College in Rome.
Archbishop John Nienstedt celebrated the Mass and instituted the new acolytes. Among the concelebrants of the Mass were the U.S. bishops present in Rome for their ad limina visits with Pope Benedict XVI.
As he handed each seminarian the gold paten used in the celebration of the Eucharist, Archbishop Nienstedt said: “Take this vessel of bread for the celebration of the Eucharist. Make your lives worthy of your service at the table of the Lord and of his church.”
As the rite indicates, an acolyte is charged with assisting at the celebration of the Eucharist, purifying the sacred vessels and, when needed, to assist with the distribution of Holy Communion.
The seminarians have now received the ministry of lector and acolyte in anticipation of their diaconal, and then priestly, ordination.