In observance of World Day for Consecrated Life, celebrated Feb. 2, Bishop David M. O’Connell, C.M., issued a statement honoring the essential contributions of consecrated men and women to the faith-filled legacy of the Diocese of Trenton that continues today.
He wrote: “Since its establishment in 1881, the Diocese of Trenton has grown and flourished in countless ways thanks to the presence, prayer and apostolic works of scores of religious women and men who have generously served here in our four counties. We are profoundly in their debt. Our Catholic schools and programs of religious education, our hospitals and nursing homes, our works for the poor, the needy and the elderly, our parishes and diocesan offices could not have succeeded in their mission without the contributions of sisters, brothers and priests in consecrated life.
“Along with the prayers and service of consecrated virgins and widows, women and men religious have given the clergy and faithful of the Diocese of Trenton a legacy of love and light that endures to the present day. They deserve our grateful prayer and support. With God’s grace, may our Diocese be a source of new vocations to consecrated life, of new and dedicated laborers in the vineyard of the Lord.”
World Day for Consecrated Life was instituted by Pope John Paul II in 1997, in conjunction with the Feast of the Presentation of the Lord, commemorating the coming of Christ, the Light of the World. Similarly, consecrated men and women are called to spread the light and love of Jesus Christ through their unique witness of selfless service, such as caring for the poor, the contemplative work of prayer, or through their professional careers.
Catholic Schools Week was observed in a myriad of ways throughout the local communities of the Diocese, including a special visit by Bishop O’Connell to three different schools. During his visit to St. Jerome School, West Long Branch; Sacred Heart School, Mount Holly, and St. Gregory the Great Academy, Hamilton Square, the Bishop celebrated Mass, took tours of the classrooms where he chatted with students about their lessons, and shared some informal time with faculty and other school representatives.
Check in here for comprehensive reporting and photos from The Monitor on Catholic Schools Week around the Diocese.