ORLANDO, FL – Father Adam D. Marchese, (2LT) USAR, a candidate for United States Military chaplaincy, was ordained a Catholic priest on Saturday, July 25, in his home Diocese of Orlando, FL. He hopes eventually to serve as a Catholic chaplain in the U.S. Army with endorsement and faculties from the Archdiocese for the Military Services, USA (AMS). Watch video of the ordination here.
Father Marchese, 30, completed the program for priestly formation at St. Vincent De Paul Regional Seminary in Boynton Beach, FL, where he earned a Master of Divinity Degree (M.Div.). His ordination was celebrated at St. James Cathedral in Orlando through the laying of hands and the prayer of consecration invoking the Holy Spirit by Bishop John Noonan. His Excellency, the Most Reverend Timothy P. Broglio, J.C.D., Archbishop for the Military Services, concelebrated the 10:00 a.m. ordination Mass.
Among those in attendance were the new priests’s parents, Dominick and Colleen Marchese, and his brother, Mr. Christopher Marchese. Commenting on his priestly ordination, Father Marchese said, “I look forward to becoming what God has called me to be. I believe it would be wrong to see ordination as the end of seminary. Instead, it’s the beginning of a life of service to God and his people.”
Father Marchese celebrated his first Mass on Sunday at Annunciation Catholic Church in Altamonte Springs, FL. He plans to go on active duty in the Army following three years of pastoral service in the Diocese of Orlando. His first assignment there will be at St. Margaret Mary Catholic Church in Winter Park, FL.
The new priest is a 2008 graduate of Winter Springs High School in Florida. Before entering the seminary, he went to culinary school and still nurses a passion for cooking, much to the delight of his fellow priests and seminarians. He went on to earn a bachelor’s degree in philosophy from St. John Vianney College Seminary in Miami before entering St. Vincent De Paul Regional Seminary.
Father Marchese said he was inspired to pursue a vocation after rediscovering his Catholic faith in his late teens. “I consider myself a ‘re-vert’ to the faith,” he said. “I’m a cradle Catholic, but I didn’t take my faith seriously until I was 18. The short version is, I opened myself up to a conversation with God, with the help of some friends, and what came with that was undeniable… I moved to Palm Beach from Orlando and joined a Young Adult group that helped me to develop my faith. A friend from that group invited me to pray in the Blessed Sacrament chapel regularly and to attend daily Mass a few times a week.”
The eventual active-duty service of Father Marchese and other Catholic chaplain candidates is greatly anticipated by the Army, which, like all other branches of the U.S. Military, continues to suffer a chronic shortage of Catholic chaplains. Currently, only 89 priests are on active duty in the Army, serving a Catholic population of more than 117,000 soldiers spread all over the world, not counting their families.
Young men interested in discerning a priestly vocation, and the vocation within a vocation to serve those who serve in the U.S. military, can find more information at www.milarch.org/vocations, or may contact the AMS Vocations Director, Father Aidan Logan, O.C.S.O., by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Support AMS Vocations at www.milarch.org/donate.