Two ordained to the transitional diaconate Print
Around the Diocese
Written by Kevin Wondrash, Catholic Herald Staff   
Thursday, Apr. 07, 2016 -- 12:00 AM
diaconate 2016

Deacon Luke Syse (left) and Deacon Jared Holzhuter (right) stand with Bishop Robert C. Morlino after they were ordained to the transitional diaconate during Mass April 1 at Immaculate Heart of Mary Church in Monona. To view or purchase photos, go to

(Catholic Herald photo/Kevin Wondrash)

MONONA -- The Diocese of Madison received two great gifts on Friday of the Easter Octave.

Deacon Jared Holzhuter and Deacon Luke Syse were ordained to the transitional diaconate at Immaculate Heart of Mary Church in Monona.

As Mass began, Bishop Robert C. Morlino of Madison thanked everyone for coming “to celebrate this great moment of joy and of God’s loving care for the Diocese of Madison as he gives us two wonderful new deacons.”

Bishop Morlino also thanked the new deacons’ parents and families saying, “Thank you so much for giving your very best to the Lord and to his Church.”

Presented for ordination

During Mass, prior to the bishop’s homily, the two men presented themselves to the bishop as worthy to be ordained to the diaconate.

In his homily, Bishop Morlino asked the men, “What has happened to you?”

He remarked they’ve been in vocation formation for a long time.

“One way to describe what has happened to you is that you have come to know the glory of God shining on the face of Christ.”

He added, “What has happened to you is you have come to the point where you can say ‘we dare not even better ask, it is the Lord,’” based off the day’s reading from the Gospel of John when Christ appeared to his apostles after the Resurrection.

“The life of each one of you is so precious,” Bishop Morlino told the soon-to-be ordained. “You are so gifted in so many ways. You could be doing a lot of other things, but not once you’ve seen the glory of God shining . . . that makes all the difference.”

Ordination rites

Following the homily, Bishop Morlino performed the ordination rites.

Both men 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 responded, “I do,” to each of these.

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

Next, 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.

Next, came the Laying on of Hands -- where 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.

Fr. Paul Arinze, pastor of Our Lady of the Assumption Parish in Beloit and former vocations director for the diocese, assisted Deacon Holzhuter. Fr. Eric Nielsen, pastor of St. Paul University Catholic Center in Madison, assisted Deacon Syse.

The new deacons then each 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 Morlino greeted them both with a sign of peace, followed by other deacons present doing the same, welcoming them to the Order of Deacons.

The transitional deacons

Deacon Holzhuter is the son of Tammie and John Holzhuter, members of St. John Vianney Parish in Janesville. Deacon Syse is the son of Patty and Jim Syse of St. Isidore Parish in Blanchardville.

Deacon Holzhuter is in his third year of theology studies at Sacred Heart Major Seminary in Detroit, while Deacon Syse is in his third year of theology studies at the Pontifical North American College in Rome.

They both hope to be ordained to the priesthood next year.

Seminarian Andrew Showers is scheduled to be ordained to the transitional diaconate later this year in Rome and is set to be ordained to the priesthood with Deacon Holzhuter and Deacon Syse.