Catholic Diocese of Wilmington

Year for Priests Diocesan Initiatives



Spiritual Renewal


An Evening of Eucharistic Adoration for Vocations was held in most parishes on the Feast of St. John Vianney (4 August 2009).


Deanery-centered Evenings of Eucharistic Adoration for Priestly Vocations were held in each of the diocese’s seven deaneries throughout Lent and the Easter Season of 2010.


    * City Deanery, St. Thomas the Apostle Church, 18 February

    * Iron Hill Deanery, St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Church, 24             February

    *  Eastern Shore Deanery, St. Christopher Church, 2 March

    * Ocean Deanery, St. Edmond Church, 18 March

    * Brandywine Hundred Deanery, Immaculate Heart of Mary             Church, 23 March

    * Silver Lake Deanery, Holy Cross Church, 13 April

    * Central New Castle Deanery, St. John the Beloved Church, 24     May


An Advent Afternoon of Recollection for Priests was held at Immaculate Conception Church (Elkton, MD) on 3 December 2009; the event included dinner.


A list of recommended spiritual reading comprising books and documents on priestly spirituality, life and ministry was sent to all priests of the diocese on 17 December 2009.





Liturgical Initiatives


A Diocesan Vestment was designed and produced.


Priesthood Sunday was celebrated throughout the diocese on 27 September 2009.


A Jubilee Mass and dinner to celebrate significant ordination anniversaries is being planned for Spring 2010.



Fraternity and Ongoing Formation


The Year for Priests officially opened in the Diocese of Wilmington with a presbyteral gathering for Evening Prayer and an outdoor picnic     meal at St. John the Apostle Church in Milford, DE on 18 June 2009.


A celebration of priesthood was held at St. Joseph’s Church (Cordova,   MD) on 30 September 2009; the event included prayer, recreation and     an outdoor picnic meal.


A two-day seminar for priests was held at Cambridge, MD;     presentations addressed priestly life and spirituality.


Coinciding with Priesthood Sunday (27 September 2009), the Knights     of Columbus and Serra Club hosted a dinner for priests.


A musical and artistic event in honor of priests is scheduled for 13     May 2010; this event is being produced by the Office of Catholic     Schools.



Promoting the Gift of the Priestly Vocation


Bishop W. Francis Malooly issued “A Pastoral Letter on Priesthood” on 10 September 2009.


A list of speakers was provided for parishes and other groups seeking to promote the gift of priesthood.  Speakers included the Revs. Norman Carroll, Joseph Cocucci, Stanislao Esposito, Anthony Giamello, John Grimm, John Hopkins, Stephen Hurley,  Leonard Klein, James Lentini, Timothy Nolan and Thomas Protack.


Cards featuring a prayer for help in discerning one’s vocation were created for and distributed to students in all diocesan schools.


Cards featuring a prayer for priests were created for and distributed to diocesan parishes and ministries.


A number of schools were visited during National Vocations Awareness Week (9-15 January 2010).


Theology on Tap, a Catholic speaker series for young adults, hosted a number of sessions on topics related to the priesthood; speakers and topics included Fathers Leonard Kempski and Timothy Nolan (24 November 2009, “Priestly Vocations from Two Generations”); Father Anthony Giamello (1 December 2009, “Ministry to the Military”); Bishop W. Francis Malooly (8 December 2009, “My Vocation Story”) and Father James Jackson (15 December 2009, “Prison Ministry”).



Media-Related Initiatives



In addition to publishing Bishop Malooly’s 10 September 2009 “Pastoral Letter on Priesthood” the Dialog published a special insert highlighting planned activities for the Year for Priests.


The Dialog published a series of articles on various aspects of priestly life and ministry: “The Difference and Relationship between Ministerial Priesthood and the Priesthood of the Baptized” (Rev. James Lentini); “The Priest as Healer and Consoler    “ (Rev. Norman Carroll); The Priest as Celebrant/Presider” (Rev. Thomas Protack); “Why is the Priest Celibate and Male?    “ (Rev. Timothy Nolan); “The Role of the Faithful in Promoting Vocations” (Rev. Joseph Cocucci); “The Priest as Confessor” (Rev. Steven Hurley); “The Priest as Preacher and Teacher” (Rev. Leonard Klein); “Priesthood and Spiritual Fatherhood” (Rev. Joseph McMahon); and “The Difference between a Diocesan Priest and a Religious Priest” (Rev. Stanislao Esposito).


The Dialog instituted a series of articles profiling priests and their ministries; among others, a high-school chaplain (Rev. William Cocco) and a hospital chaplain (Rev. Clemens Manista) were featured.


The regularly featured Dialog article on “Lives of the Saints” was modified to highlight priests who have been canonized.


Many parishes produced and hung outdoor banners with the official USCCB Year for Priests graphics.


A revised website was created for the Office of Priestly and Religious Vocations.


A web page was created to promote Year for Priests activities and events.


A list of films which portray priests and priesthood in a positive light was produced and disseminated via Catholic Youth Ministry’s website.