Bishop Hying ordains three new priests Print
Around the Diocese
Written by Kevin Wondrash, Catholic Herald Staff   
Thursday, Jul. 11, 2019 -- 12:00 AM
ordination 2019
Bishop Donald J. Hying of Madison, second from left, and newly ordained priests, pictured from left: Fr. Bill Van Wagner, Fr. Cristian Valenzuela, and Fr. Steve Brunner, following their Ordination Mass at St. Maria Goretti Church in Madison on June 28. To view or purchase photos, go to (Catholic Herald photos/Kevin Wondrash)

MADISON -- “On this solemnity of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, the Church rejoices that God has called these three young men to give their lives to Christ as priests,” said Bishop Donald J. Hying of Madison.

A mere three days after his installation as the fifth Bishop of Madison, Bishop Hying, with a self-admitted devotion to the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, ordained three men to the priesthood at St. Maria Goretti Church in Madison on Friday, June 28, the feast of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus.

The three new priests were: Fr. Steve Brunner, Fr. Bill Van Wagner, and Fr. Cristian Valenzuela.

The call to the priesthood

Prior to Bishop Hying’s homily, Fr. Paul Arinze, pastor at St. John Vianney Parish in Madison and former diocesan vocations director, presented the men to In his homily, Bishop Hying recalled his episcopal predecessor, saying, “We all think of Bishop Morlino, tonight, who would have been here, but is here in the power of the Holy Spirit. I know Bishop was such a father to the young men being ordained as well as to all of our seminarians and priests.”

Bishop Robert C. Morlino died last November after being bishop in Madison for 15 years.

Bishop Hying also made another mention of the Feast of the Sacred Heart, saying “all that this solemnity represents is poured into your life, today, that Jesus has called you to be an extension of his life, his death, and his resurrection in this world.”

Ordination rites

Following Bishop Hying’s homily, the three men each made their promises as a priest.

The men then lay prostrate on the floor, dying to their selves and rising to new life during the Litany of Supplication, while a litany of saints was sung.

Next, came the Laying on of Hands and Prayer of Ordination. Bishop Hying placed his hands on their heads, conferring upon them the gift of the Holy Spirit. Priests in attendance then took turns also laying their hands on their heads.

The newly ordained were then vested with a stole and chasuble. Father Brunner was vested by Msgr. Kevin Holmes, rector of Cathedral Parish in Madison. Father Van Wagner was vested by Father Arinze. Father Valenzuela was vested by Fr. Faustino Ruiz from the Society of Jesus Christ the Priest and incardinated and in residence in the Diocese of Madison.

The bishop then anointed the hands of the new priests with Sacred Chrism and their hands were then wrapped in the maniturgia.

Parents of the newly ordained then brought up the Offertory gifts to the bishop. These were then presented to the new priests.

Priests in attendance again lined up to offer a sign of peace to the newly ordained.

As Mass concluded, the newly ordained offered their first blessings to Bishop Hying, as well as to their families.

Bishop Hying said, “I ask the blessing of these three new priests, blessings on our diocese, blessings on my episcopacy, blessings on our service to the Lord.”

Mass participants

Bishop Hying was the main celebrant of the Mass. Concelebrants included Msgr. Todd Lajiness from Sacred Heart Major Seminary in Detroit, where Father Van Wagner attended major seminary; Msgr. Andrew Baker from Mount St. Mary’s Seminary in Emmitsburg, Md., where Father Brunner attended major seminary; along with other priests of the Diocese of Madison and priest guests in attendance.

The Deacon of the Word was Deacon Michael Johnson and the Deacon of the Eucharist was Deacon Vincent Racanelli. Deacons Johnson and Racanelli are set to be ordained as priests next year.

Fr. Greg Ihm, vocations director for the diocese, served as master of ceremonies. Diocesan seminarians were Mass servers.

The Madison Diocesan Choir, directed by Dr. Patrick Gorman, provided music.

The Knights of Columbus Honor Guard Assembly 1200 Madison, along with the Knights and Ladies of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre, were in attendance.

The new priests

Father Brunner is the son of Denise and Tom Brunner. He is assigned to St. Dennis Parish in Madison as parochial vicar.

Father Van Wagner is the son of Peggy and Chris Van Wagner. He is assigned to St. Maria Goretti Parish in Madison as parochial vicar.

Father Valenzuela is the son of Verónica and Carlos Valenzuela. A member of the Society of Jesus Christ the Priest, he is returning to Spain for study before an assignment in the Diocese of Madison.

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