Dear Friends in Christ,

This coming Sunday we will celebrate the Solemnity of Pentecost, the coming of the Holy Spirit upon the disciples in the upper room in Jerusalem. This feast marks the birth of the Church. The Holy Spirit descended and the apostles began to bear witness to Christ’s paschal mystery. They were strengthened by the Holy Spirit to bring the Gospel of Jesus to the ends of the earth.

On the Solemnity of Pentecost each year, we take up a special collection to fund the education of our seminarians.With faith in the Holy Spirit, we continue to pray for priestly vocations in our diocese and throughout the world. We also make sacrifices so that our future priests, upon whom the Holy Spirit will descend at their ordination, will receive a good and strong formation for the priesthood.

I look forward to ordaining five of our seminarians to the priesthood on June 2nd. This is the largest ordination class in our diocese since the early 1970’s. Thanks to your generosity in the annual Pentecost Collection, we have been able to fund their seminary education. I look forward to ordaining these five young men and ask you to pray for them, that they may be good and holy priests. We have many other young men in formation for the priesthood in our diocese, so I ask you to continue to be generous in your contributions to the Pentecost Collection.

Please know of my prayers for you as we approach the Solemnity of Pentecost. The Holy Spirit, Who gave birth to the Church and is the soul of the Church, guides us in truth and sanctifies us through the sacraments. The Holy Spirit unites us as brothers and sisters in the Body of Christ.

After Pentecost a climate of profound joy came to pass in the apostles. “The disciples were filled with joy and the Holy Spirit” (Acts 13:52). May the Holy Spirit bless you with that joy and with strength to bear witness to Christ in the world! And may the Holy Spirit continue to bless the Church in our diocese with priests to lead, guide, and serve our parish communities on the path of holiness!
Sincerely yours in Christ,

Kevin C. Rhoades
Bishop of Fort Wayne-South Bend