Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
I am not so proud a man that I cannot admit to having some faults and foibles. I am often a bit disorganized, I dance awkwardly, and I can be more than a little grouchy when I’m tired. But there’s another weakness of mine that has rompted me to write this letter this week; my inability to remember important dates and anniversaries in a timely manner.

I’m not really sure why I have difficulty remembering things like birthdays, or anniversaries, or other important dates, but I do. For as good as I am and try to be about remembering names and faces of parishioners, I am almost as disastrously
bad at remembering particular important dates in the lives of others. To be perfectly honest, I struggle with some of those dates even with my own immediate family. It seems to be a certain kind of mental block, despite my knowing that these
dates are special in the lives of those celebrating them.

This is all a longwinded way of saying that we have some very wonderful anniversaries to celebrate in the parish this year. 2001 and 2011 were happy years for St. Charles as we welcomed and celebrated new deacons into service within
our parish family. And now, 10 and 20 years later, we rejoice with Deacons Carl, Jack, Jerry, and Romy as they mark decades of ministry here at St. Charles Borromeo. While the actual dates were in the Spring, I’ve chosen this time to
recognize them for two reasons: 1) My inability to keep better track of individual dates and 2) July is the month that the Diocese of Trenton recognizes all of the clergy and religious who have significant anniversaries for a given year.

I’m taking all of the deacons and their wives out for dinner to mark the occasion and to celebrate their good work and their sacrifices within our parish community. And while I’ll speak to them at that time of my personal gratitude, please
allow me to offer a few words here as well.

I am so blessed to be able to work so closely with these men in service to St. Charles. To a man, they are all unique, but united in their love of Christ and the Church. I truly enjoy being with them, from getting ready in the sacristy before Mass to participating in the Stations of the Cross that they lead, to myriads of other moments. I appreciate their preaching; it’s the only time I can listen to a homily not my own. Their dedication, their prayerfulness, their connection to the families
and community are so deeply edifying and inspire me to a better priest and pastor. Truly, we are all richer for their service. And a very special thank you to the wives and families of these men; for sharing them with a wider parish family and all the sacrifices that entails.

Let us mark well the ordination anniversaries of Deacons Romy, Jerry, Jack, and Carl!

Peace and Goodness,
Fr. Dan