Monday, June 7, 2021


 41 years ago, June 7, 1980, Fathers John Lyons, Tom Campbell and I were ordained priests at our Cathedral by Bishop Raymond Lessard . The choir was from the Church of the Most Holy Trinity in Augusta where I would become pastor 11 years later. The gold vestments the bishop and deacons are wearing were from St. Joseph Church in Macon where I would become pastor 24 years later! Those vestments are still there, 41 years later!


Fr. Michael J. Kavanaugh said...

Ah, good to see THE miter! Same one he wore when he ordained me!

Pierre said...

Congratulations Father McDonald on 41 glorious years of priesthood! Ad multos annos!


the sideburns and mustache give the decade away!

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

FrMJK, but when I was ordained it wasn’t sweat stained!

Anonymous said...

Thank you, Father. D-day+1 is also quite fitting.

Anonymous said...

Father, congratulations on 41 years! Deo gratias for your holy priesthood.


Richard M. Sawicki said...


Congratulations! Beautiful photos!


Gaudete in Domino Semper!

Michael A said...

Father McDonald: Happy Anniversary. Thank you for answering God's call to your vocation. The best hing is that you're a reformed liberal, correct? I'd wish you another 41 years, but considering the world we live in I'm not sure that'd be the nice thing to do.

Robert Kumpel said...

Congratulations. As someone morally opposed to human cloning, I wish we could get more priests just like you.

rcg said...

Congratulations on your ordination and thank you for your many years of prayerful service.

Anonymous said...

Why were the gold vestments in Macon? Kida strange for the bishop to call 165 miles away for them!

Mark Thomas said...

Father McDonald, you are God's holy priest.


Mark Thomas

Anonymous said...

Father, if you think it went fast and wonder sometimes how effective were those years, you can thank God that instead you were spared a worldly career or multiples thereof whose main occupation was consumed in making sure of a roof/utilities/food and maybe, maybe even a retirement income, and that otherwise you helped brand X or nation Y dominate the market or the world and are remembered by at least three people (ok, maybe two) as "a good worker".

Ditto as for any thoughts on no wife/children/grandchildren, where a sampling of folk would show huge numbers of deserted and childless spouses, and where today your odds of having a solid marriage are likely highest as a priest.

You chose wisely, Grasshopper. Many many thanks for that choice.

Sophia said...

Sophia here: Congratulations on 41 years of faithfully serving God's people from one of the many sheep who profited so much from your orthodox care! I and many others still remember and thank God for the many Blessings He showered on you to keep you committed to His call. May He continue to produce good fruit through your work! Thanks again for not only saying "Yes" but especially for living that "Yes"!

Anonymous said...

If a man wishes to answer God's call to priesthood in whole or even in part because he will be "spared" a worldly career, deserted and childless spouses, a broken marriage, or the other burdens that come with the life of the laity, he should be rejected by the vocation director or bishop.

A wise abbot told me once that, in interviewing candidates for the monastery, too many came with the idea that they would be escaping the troubles of the world in seeking to live within the confines of a cloistered existence. He said that that attitude indicated two things; First, that they had a very poor understanding of the reason and purpose of a monastic vocation, and Second, that they had little or no understanding of what life in a cloistered community was really like. "We don't always like each other in here," he said.

Pierre said...

Father McDonald,

Off topic but I thought you would like to see this story about a priest who was removed in the Rockford, Illinois. What is interesting is that hundreds of his parishioners are demanding he be reinstated or assigned to another parish. This story appears in the secular press. Please note, his bishop, is the one who tried to place restrictions on Summorum Pontificum.

Anonymous said...

Anon832...nobody said anything about taking holy orders to dodge the hassles of a job or wife and kids. They were words of solace as those consecrated often have an unrealistic view of the secular, and how you manage to go off the rails with accusations is beyond me.

Be that as it may be, although a life in a cloister is beset by many of the same personality conflicts/defects as the secular world, a time honored and holy reason to live in a cloister IS to flee the concerns and distractions of the world in order to be free to spend one's life seeking union with God. Any abbot which denies that is no abbot I would want directing me.

Anonymous said...

Anon 2:27 - No accusations, just a response to "You chose wisely, Grasshopper," suggesting strongly that the choice of secular work and life is unwise or burdensome while choosing the clerical life is wise.

No, monastic life is not a running FROM but a running TO. It is not an escape from concerns and distractions, but a deeper delve into the pains and sufferings of the world.

GRETCHEN ERLICHMAN wrote in "Crisis" magazine this year: "I am not entering a monastery to escape the world or to display false piety. I am entering religious life so that I may follow the particular vocation by which I can most perfectly fulfill my purpose as a Christian member of human society. In denying herself the things of the world, a nun radically affirms the reality of both good and evil in the world. In entering the cloister, she frees herself to enter more deeply into the suffering of a suffering world. And, by closing her eyes in prayer, she is able to open her heart to a world so desperately in need."

Catholic Digest notes: "MEN BECOME MONKS TO ESCAPE THE WORLD: This is maybe the greatest misconception about the monastic life — that it is somehow an “escape” from the “real world”of bilk-and-money. A monk enters the rigors of the abbey not to escape reality, but to meet it head on, to encounter life unfiltered by the noise of the outside world. He gives himself up to the evangelical counsels (poverty, chastity, and obedience — and also stability) to not only “seek the living God,” but to embrace life — not escape it."

Even Hinduism speaks to the "escape" idea: "The primary motivation for choosing monastic life should not be to escape something unpleasant." (Vedanta SOciety of Southern California)

Joseph Johnson said...

THE mitre still resides in the sacristy of the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist . .

Anonymous said...

Re: Batavia priest: "I am here because they are canceling Fr. Parker without any reason and they’re not assigning him to another church,” said parishioner..._"

There is no chance - none - that the Bishop of Rockford has no reason for his actions. Maybe they haven't spelled them out to the parishioners - the bishop doesn't have to. Personnel matters are, and should be, confidential.

Fr. Parker writes: "My letter of appointment as pastor of Holy Cross did not state a term limit and no reason for my departure has been provided to me." Most assignments don't come with stated term limits. Priests serve at the discretion of the bishop.

The local paper reports: "Since last February, efforts have been made [by the bishop] to address with Father Parker in a private manner various concerns that have arisen regarding his service as pastor,” according to the [diocesan] website. “Father Parker refused to engage in that dialogue and so a just resolution of those concerns has not been possible."

Anonymous said...

Anonymous K at 6:47 PM,

Yes the bishop has a reason: he opposes faithful Catholic priests. This bishop was insubordinate to his lawful superior, Pope Benedict, when Summorum Pontificum was issued, trying to countermand the Pope’s decree.

Anonymous said...

Anon TJM says, "Yes the bishop has a reason: he opposes faithful Catholic priests."

There's the mind-reader phenomenon.

On top of that, TJM knows ALL the facts, has heard ALL the discussions, has been privy to ALL the communications.

Or has he?

My guess is that he has not. Therefore he relies on his capacity to read the good bishop's mind to arrive at his conclusion.

ByzRus said...

Axios!! Many years, Fr!

Anonymous said...

Anonymous K at 7:51 AM,

LOL. You do this ALL of the time. I recall when John Nolan eviscerated you on this very point. Here's a clue: the Bishop in direct defiance of the Holy Father, Pope Benedict, attempted to place restrictions on Summorum Pontificum. Even you should be able to figure this out

Anonymous said...

TJM - You haven't figured anything out. You have made assumptions based on highly slanted "reports" and one-sided comments.

It "LOOKS," to you, like some terrible bishop persecuting a "holy" priest, so, without further evidence, you conclude that that is the case.

It's foolishness.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous K,

Can’t deal with the bishop’s rank disobedience, can you. Like Markbot, you avoid inconvenient facts. I guess hundreds of Catholics living under this priest’s leadership do not count, just like the victims of clerical sexual abuse. The cleric always knows better

Anonymous said...

TJM - You've claimed "rank disobedience" but have given no evidence. You base this on such extremely biased sources as the Church Militant, a hyper-fringe organization that had to stop using the name "Catholic" in it's title, and whose founder/spokesman Michael Voris has denied the validity of Rabbinic Judaism in his infamous, "No temple, no sacrifices, no priesthood, no Judaism. What replaced it in history is what has come down to us today: Rabbinical Judaism. This is not the Judaism of the Covenant. It is a man-made religion” statement which is contrary to the teaching of the Catholic Church.

I'm not going to take your word for it - on this or anything.

Facts don't lie.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous K at 2:56 PM,

Actually, no because I do not read Church Militant. I received the information on the Bishop's rank disobedience from the Rockford Diocese' own website! You really are getting to be soothsayer, assuming that because I am a traditional Catholic who still believes what the Church teaches, that I must be getting my information from Church Militant or maybe some Sedevacantist website. Based on YOUR statements I know you get your information from Hell's Bible aka the New York Times and the National Anti-Catholic Reporter.

Anonymous said...

So the Rockford website says that the bishop is practicing rank disobedience? I think you'd better read it again.

I looked at it - nothing there about defiance of the Holy Father.

You're making this up as you go along.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous K,

You obviously did not read the bishop’s statement on Summorum Pontificum. I expect no less from someone who gets their talking points from The New York Times where critical thinking disappeared long ago. The latest from the Times is their defense of an editor who thinks the American flag is threatening or some such nonsense

Anonymous said...

Anonymous K,

This comes from Pray Tell (aka Pray Sniff) January 25, 2017:

Bishop David Malloy, Ordinary of the Rockford Illinois diocese, in a January 11 letter to his priests, has set limits on both the practice of celebrating Mass ad orientem, and the celebration of liturgy according to the Extraordinary Form.

Citing the need for “unity in the shared celebration of the sacraments, especially the Eucharist” he has asked that no priest celebrate either ad orientem or according to the Extraordinary Form without his permission — a move he presents as an act of governance within his diocese, “to underscore our unity” and limit “confusion.”

The Bishop has NO authority to do this and is defying Pope Benedict. Gee, do you think he may have it in for faithful, traditional Catholic priests? I guess in your world 2 plus 2 = 5

Anonymous said...

Anonymous K,

No reply? Mad that Pray Tell undercut you?

Anonymous said...

Can. 392 §1. Since he must protect the unity of the universal Church, a bishop is bound to promote the common discipline of the whole Church and therefore to urge the observance of all ecclesiastical laws.

§2. He is to exercise vigilance so that abuses do not creep into ecclesiastical discipline, especially regarding the ministry of the word, the celebration of the sacraments and sacramentals, the worship of God and the veneration of the saints, and the administration of goods.

A bishop has the authority, even the responsibility, to oversee the liturgy in his diocese. Pastoral governance, wot wot...

Anonymous said...

Anonymous K,

That is really lame. Canon law does not permit a bishop to alter or modify the decrees of the Supreme Pontiff. Epic fail

Anonymous said...

The Supreme Pontiff cannot ignore canon law.

Bishops are not surrogates in their dioceses for the Pope. They, in themselves, by virtue of their ordination, are empowered to act according to Canon Law.

Their authority is theirs, it does not derive from the authority of the Bishop of Rome.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous K,

A Pope can change canon law, a bishop cannot.

A Pope can issue a new missal, a bishop cannot.

Ergo, a bishop cannot ignore, modify nor restrict a papal motu propria like Summorum Pontificum. Checkmate!