During this Year of the Real Presence, when the faithful are praying before the Most Blessed Sacrament for more vocations, it is fitting that the next man to be ordained a priest first heard his call from God during Eucharistic Adoration.
Rev. Mr. Philip J. Maas will be ordained a priest by Bishop Alfred Schlert at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, June 5, at the Cathedral of St. Catharine of Siena, Allentown.
“It was in November of my senior year at Allentown Central Catholic High School,” Deacon Maas said, recalling the time he got his first inkling of a possible future as a priest. “I was praying with my classmates in Eucharistic Adoration as part of a high school retreat.”
It would take another six years from that moment, during which he pursued another path by attending college and later working as an electrical engineer, before he fully understood what God wanted him to do. He resigned from his job and entered St. Charles Borromeo Seminary.
Father Christopher Butera, Director of Seminary Formation, said Deacon Maas will bring to the Priesthood a very valuable mix of reverence for the Liturgy, personal holiness, and a variety of diverse interests.
“He will be able to really relate to people of all different backgrounds across the Diocese.” Father Butera said. “He is reverent and holy, but he can also take apart an engine.”
Deacon Maas will enter the Priesthood at a time when there are fewer diocesan priests than ever to serve the faithful in the 60-year history of the Diocese. That is part of the reason that Bishop Schlert has asked everyone to pray before the Most Blessed Sacrament that more young men will be open to becoming a priest.
The Year of the Real Presence is a time for the faithful to rededicate themselves to, and to reaffirm their belief in, the presence of Jesus Christ in the Holy Eucharist. The year also is a time for people to rejoice in the gift of their own presence at Mass with families, friends, and clergy.
The Ordination is open to the public, and also will be livestreamed on AD Today.