UP man ordained as 'transitional deacon'

MARQUETTE, Mich. (WLUC) - Devoting one's life to the clergy is no small deed. One Upper Michigan man is one step closer to becoming a priest.

Michael Kowalewski has been studying for the priesthood for more than a decade and Friday he was ordained a deacon, which means he's one step closer to becoming a priest.

"I feel very blessed to be able to serve Jesus Christ this way and give my life to him," Kowalewski acknowledged.

"When I was 14, I heard His voice in my heart saying that He wanted me to dedicate my life to serving Him and so this is part of the journey towards that," reckoned Kowalewski.

Originally from Rhode Island, Kowalewski moved to Milwaukee to study at Sacred Heart Seminary School. He’s already spent several years in Upper Michigan, working in Paradise and at his home parish in L'Anse. So he's familiar with U.P. life.

"I love it. I enjoy the people very much. The parishes are a little bit smaller. It feels more like family in that sense. And I enjoy the culture, being out in the woods. I enjoy hiking kayaking, back-country camping," Kowalewski declared.

He'll continue his studies and working with the public and with Father Hasse to move forward towards the priesthood.

"That all comes to fruition with ordination to the priesthood and so God willing, within about six months Michael who is being ordained a deacon today will then be ordained again as a priest," Father Hasse divulged.

“So I think there's cause for rejoicing, right? That somebody is going to live a life that's not focused on their own profit, right? But really to serve the community," asserted Father Hasse.

As part of Friday’s ceremony, Deacon Kowalewsk made his pledge to Bishop Doerfler. So he’ll will have to go wherever Bishop Doerfler assigns him.

"And so you do know you're going to be in the U.P. And I always say a bad day in the U.P. is better than a good day anywhere else," stated Father Hasse.

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