Sale Diocese’s newest priest, Fr Avinash George, was ordained on January 5th in his home parish in Kerala, India. He was ordained in the SyroMalabar Rite by the Archbishop of Tellicherry, Archbishop George Njaralakatt in a lengthy service.

From the beginning of the ordination to the end of the thanksgiving Mass celebrated by the new priest, it was more than three and a half hours. Our diocese had strong clergy representation at the ordination which included Bishop Pat O’Regan, four priests and a deacon. Following the ordination there was an interval during which time Archbishop Njaralakatt left for an ordination elsewhere and the altar was prepared for Fr George’s first Mass.

His parents, George and Lucy, offered the bread and wine in the offertory procession.

Fr George, who is well-known for his singing at Easter liturgies in this diocese, sang most of the liturgy, moving all who attended, particularly at the time of consecration. After Mass, Bishop O’Regan gave thanks for Fr George’s decision to train for the priesthood for Sale Diocese and thanked everyone for their fine hospitality and warm friendship.

Witnessing the ordination from the Sale Diocese were the bishop, Fr Denis O’Bryan, Fr Aju Varghese CMI, Fr Siju Xavier, Fr Michael Willemsen, Deacon Stanly Devasia, Sr Faustina Ede (Sister of the Nativity), Cranbourne and Matt and Jen Hanratty from the Traralgon parish. Also there were Fr George’s uncle Sunni and auntie Mini, their three children from St Thomas the Apostle parish, Clyde North, his cousins, Prince and Nina from Our Lady Help of Christians parish, Narre Warren and seminarian, Jithin Pinto. Fr George returns to the diocese this week to take up his first appointment as assistant priest at Bairnsdale.

This story first appeared in Catholic Life.