A Circle of Grace

On the left is the freshly ordained Father Scott Garno, with Bishop Daniel Herzog and Bishop Coadjutor Bill Love, preparing to celebrate the Eucharist at the Ordination Mass.

There is a tradition in the church to receive a blessing from the newly ordained priest, and I have to say it was among the most moving moments of my life… one of those places where you’re blessed to see God’s grace come full circle. You see, it was only a few years ago, when Scott was 15, we were on an encounter weekend together. It was my privilege to “be there” when God grabbed hold of Scott and called him into a life of ministry. That alone was wow enough!

In years following I saw him minister to his friends, to his sister, to struggle with decisions, colleges, and relationships; saw him fall in love (with another amazing person from that encounter group and the summer camp team), get married, go to seminary, welcome their son Josiah and lose him to soon; grow in leadership in his home and our church, receive support from community to help them grieve and heal, and minister to others through it all; then to welcome Samuel, finish seminary, meet the challenges of the ordination process, receive a call to pastor a church, and today become a priest in God’s holy, catholic and apostolic church.

It’s moments like these where all you can really do is marvel at God’s beautiful fingerprints on the life of “the kids we knew when.”

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