Bishop Thomas Ordains Dn. David Jacobs to Holy Priesthood
In 2016, the parish community of St. Mary in Chambersburg, Pennsylvania, did not have the usual amount of time to prepare for the annual visit of our shepherd, Bishop Thomas. It has become somewhat of a tradition that Bishop Thomas conduct his visit with us over the weekend before Thanksgiving. However, in late May our pastor Fr. Theodore Pulcini received word from the Archdiocese that one of our deacons, Dn. David Jacobs, had been approved for ordination to the Holy Priesthood to fill a pastoral vacancy in our diocese. It just so happened that because Bishop Thomas was not scheduled for a parish visit over the weekend of June 25-26, he arranged to come to Chambersburg then to ordain the new priest.
Accompanied by Subdeacon Todd Mokhiber , the manager of the AV Bookstore, Bishop Thomas arrived at the church on Saturday afternoon, where he was met by Fr. Ted, who helped him and the subdeacon to set up for the next day's hierarchical liturgy.
Saturday evening, the parish hosted a dinner at a local restaurant for Bishop Thomas, Fr. Ted, Dn. Evangelos Prieston and his wife Cathy, Dn. David Jacobs and his wife Tatiana, and Subdeacon Todd Mokhiber. There was no shortage of good food and of good advice from Bishop Thomas and Fr. Ted for the soon-to- be-ordained priest, all in the context of light-hearted conversation.
Sunday morning the clergy gathered at the church about an hour before the beginning of Matins. Bishop Thomas explained at what point the priestly ordination would take place during the Hierarchical Liturgy, which was served by all the aforementioned clergy, assisted by Subdeacon Joseph Merlina and acolyte Kosta Sideras. When the time for the ordination arrived, Fr. Ted and Dn. Evangelos led Dn. David down the central aisle of the church, presenting him to Bishop Thomas. Upon entering the sanctuary, Dn. David was led by Fr. Ted three times around the Holy Table, with the ordinand each time kissing the four corners of the altar, as the chanters, led by Larry Steele, our choir director, sang "Ye Holy Martyrs," "Glory to Thee, O Christ Our God," and "Dance, O Isaiah." Then, by the laying-on of hands and the accompanying prayers, Bishop Thomas elevated Dn. David to the Holy Priesthood.
Fr. David was vested by Bishop Thomas and Fr. Ted to the loud shouts of "AXIOS! HE IS WORTHY! MUSTAHIQ!" as each of his vestments was placed on him. Fr. David then assumed his role as first priest for the remainder of the Liturgy.
After the Liturgy, there was plenty of time for pictures with the new priest and the members of his family who had traveled to Chambersburg for the occasion. The parish community sponsored an enhanced coffee hour, organized by Carolyn Steele, to celebrate the day's events.
Fr. David's ordination was a great joy to our parish because we consider him "one of our own." He first came to Chambersburg in 2008 as Fr. Ted's pastoral assistant. During his tenure in that position, he arranged music, taught chanting classes, and worked in various capacities with the youth of the parish. We are glad that Fr. David's first parish assignment will not be far from us—at St. James in Westminster, Maryland. We pray that God will prosper his work among the souls there entrusted to his care.