Every time I call back to Vietnam and talk with my family, my grandmother often asks me if I have been accepted into candidacy, or how many steps remain before ordination, and so on with many similar questions. Perhaps my grandmother still remembers what she had heard from the old pastor in my hometown when he spoke of his own priestly formation. In those days the seminarian would go through some minor orders: Porter; Lector, Exorcist, and Acolyte. However, after the Second Vatican Council, on August 15, 1972, Pope Paul VI issued the Apostolic Letter "Ministeria Quaedam," preserving and adapting the Lector and Acolyte installation before being ordained a deacon and priest.
I was installed into the Ministry of Lector by Bishop Mark O'Connell during a Mass on March 21, 2021. Being instituted a Lector is a considerable grace because it forms me more deeply to the Word of God. It has reminded me to reverence the Sacred Scripture with greater love and guarantee the Word of God’s prime place in my daily prayer. Indeed, I am taught in the seminary to read Scripture every day not just because it is fascinating or because I will be tested on it, but because the Word of God fulfills me. To be installed a lector, for me, means that I do not simply proclaim the Word of God, but most especially that I should live what I proclaim in order to constantly cultivate my relationship with the revealed Word of God. Therefore, I can be equipped to witness to Jesus Christ, whose words are spirit and life, whose words rejoice my heart and enlighten my eyes.
Reflecting on my installation as a lector, I had taken little steps through my formation and through freely accessible ways expressing my commitment to live my life oriented toward priestly ordination. I am thankful to the faculty and staff, especially Father Salocks, for your humbly and lovingly service to the seminary, and for the example of your spiritually. You and the faculty priests here are great examples for me to follow.
Our parents could not be present for our the Mass in which we were installed as lectors because of the pandemic, but I believe that our parents were united with us in their prayers. We are wholeheartedly grateful to our parents and our relatives for their support and prayers.
I am humbled and joyful to say now I am the servant of Good News (Col. 1:23).
Reflection: Mr. Hien Vu, II TheologyRead more