Two transitional deacons ordained in Madison Print
Around the Diocese
Written by Kevin Wondrash, Catholic Herald Staff   
Thursday, Apr. 23, 2020 -- 12:00 AM
Bishop and Deacons
Transitional Deacons Michael Wanta, left, and Kumud Chandra Nayak, right, stand with Bishop Donald J. Hying of Madison following their Ordination Mass on April 15 at Holy Name Heights in Madison. (Catholic Herald photo/Brian Payne)

MADISON -- Ordinations, whether to the priesthood or the diaconate, are usually very busy events filled with making sure everyone is in their right seats; lining up the men to be ordained, priests, and others in the processional before the Mass; and dozens of people doing their parts during the Mass to make sure the sacred rites are done correctly and reverently.

However, on April 15, in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, as Bishop Donald J. Hying of Madison said during his homily, “It’s not the ordination that any of us would have anticipated.”

He added, “By being winnowed down to its essence, we see with greater clarity the beauty of what is about to happen.

“Here, gathered in this oratory, are God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Spirit, the fullness of the Church, an ordained bishop who will ordain you, and all of the people that are watching and praying with us.”

The two men to be ordained to the transitional diaconate were Deacons Michael Wanta and Kumud Chandra Nayak.

The Mass took place in the oratory at Holy Name Heights in Madison.

Due to the restrictions on crowd sizes, only those “essential” were at the ordination.

The Mass was livestreamed for anyone who wanted to watch it live or at a later time.

Ordination rites

Following Bishop Hying’s homily, Deacons Wanta and Nayak participated in the Promise of the Elect, where they declared their intention to undertake the office of deacon.

They resolved to be consecrated for the Church’s ministry, to discharge the office of deacon with humble charity, to proclaim faith in word and deed, to live celibately, and to conform their lives as an example of Christ.

They approached the bishop separately, promising respect and obedience to him and his successors.

The next rite was the Litany of Supplication, where the men lie prostrate, symbolizing their unworthiness for the office and their dependence upon God and the prayers of the community.

Cantor Laura Zimmerman led a Litany of Saints during this time.

Following the litany, the bishop placed his hands upon the men’s heads in a blessing, followed by the Prayer of Consecration.

The new deacons were then vested in the stole and dalmatic.

Deacon Wanta was vested by Fr. Greg Ihm, master of ceremonies and diocesan vocations director.

Deacon Nayak was vested by Fr. Vince Brewer, pastor of St. Olaf Parish in DeForest where Deacon Nayak has been in residence.

Both men then knelt before the bishop as he placed the Book of the Gospels in their hands and exhorted, “Believe what you read, teach what you believe, and practice what you preach.”

Bishop Hying greeted them with a sign of peace, followed by Father Brewer, welcoming them to the Order of Deacons.

More on the new deacons

Deacon Wanta, from Holy Mother of Consolation Parish in Oregon, is the son of Julie and David Wanta, who are members of St. Christopher Parish in Verona.

He will be completing his seminary studies at the Pontifical North American College in Rome.

He is scheduled to be ordained to the priesthood next year.

His diaconate assignment is at St. John Vianney Parish in Janesville.

Deacon Nayak is relatively new to the Diocese of Madison.

He is the son of Pabitra and Sujan Nayak and is originally from Our Lady of Lourdes Parish, Simonbadi, Orissa, India.

Before becoming a deacon in the Diocese of Madison, he was a Brother in the Canons Regular of Jesus the Lord-Russia.

Deacon Nayak has experienced the life, culture, and faith in many different nations, including India, Dubai, Italy, Russia, the Philippines, Singapore, China, South Korea, Switzerland, Israel, and Palestine.

He said, “I am sincerely grateful to our beloved Bishop Donald Hying for accepting me to serve in his diocese, and my deepest gratitude to Msgr. James Bartylla, the vicar general, and Fr. Greg Ihm, the vocation director, who were instrumental in bringing me and the Canons Regular of Jesus the Lord to the Diocese of Madison. A special acknowledgment of appreciation and thankfulness to Fr. Vince Brewer, my pastor, who assisted me to reach to the Altar of the Lord.

“Bishop Hying has appointed me as a deacon to serve St. Olaf Parish in DeForest. Under the fraternal care of my pastor Father Vince, I will be available to serve the parishioners and people of the Diocese of Madison.”

A video of the ordination is available at