Bishop John Barres will ordain six men to the priesthood for the Diocese of Rockville Centre on June 22. The Mass of Ordination will take place in Saint Agnes Cathedral, Rockville Centre, at 11 a.m.
Those being ordained are Deacons Cody Bobick, Matthew Browne, Ken Grooms, Nelson Marquez, Alexander Turpin, Jr. and Roger Velasquez.
Catholic Faith Network (CFN) will broadcast the Mass live on Optimum channel 29/137, Verizon Fios channel 296 and Time Warner Cable channel 471. Viewers can also watch the Mass online at www.cfntv.org. CFN will rebroadcast the Mass on Saturday evening at 9 p.m.
Deacon Cody Bobick is a native of Wantagh. He has been a parishioner at Saint Frances de Chantal parish his entire life. Deacon Bobick is a product of the public school system, having graduated from General Douglas MacArthur High School in Levittown in 2009. He then went on to study history and secondary education at Hofstra University, Hempstead.
Deacon Bobick entered the seminary immediately following college, going first to the Cathedral Seminary House of Formation (Douglaston) where he received his M.A. in Catholic Philosophical Studies. Then, in 2014, he began his theological studies at Saint Joseph’s Seminary, Dunwoodie, New York.
Deacon Matthew Browne was born in Queens and raised in Valley Stream. He has been a parishioner of Holy Name of Mary parish his entire life. Matthew is a product of Catholic high school, having graduated from Kellenberg Memorial High School, Uniondale.
Deacon Browne’s seminary formation took place in Washington D.C. at Theological College, the National Seminary of the Catholic University of America. Having completed his Baccalaureate in Sacred Theology (S.T.B.), he is pursuing a Licentiate in Sacred Theology (S.T.L.) with a focus on Ecclesiology.
A parishioner of the Church of Cure of Ars, Merrick, Deacon Ken Grooms was born into a Southern Baptist family in Charleston, South Carolina and converted to Catholicism while a philosophy graduate student at the University of South Carolina in 1987, the same year that Pope John Paul II came to that school. The following year Deacon Grooms moved to New York and worked as a full-time volunteer for the Missionaries of Charity in the South Bronx. He was blessed to meet Mother Teresa several times, and the future saint prayed for his vocation.
Deacon Grooms then moved to Long Island and worked as a caregiver for a family in Merrick and as a cook at the Saint Pius X residence for retired priests.
In 2013, he spent almost a year as a Trappist monk at Mepkin Abbey in S.C., before discerning a call to the diocesan priesthood. He entered Pope Saint John XXIII National Seminary in Weston, Massachusetts, a seminary specializing in late vocations in 2015. For the past three summers Deacon Grooms was assigned to the Church of Saint Patrick, Bay Shore and the Church of Corpus Christi, Mineola.
Deacon Nelson Marquez was born in San Miguel, El Salvador. He grew up in a committed Catholic family. In his hometown in El Salvador, Deacon Marquez studied in a Catholic school. After high school, he studied economics in the National University of El Salvador. While there, he met a priest at the Cathedral of his hometown who encouraged him to join the seminary.
During vacations to Long Island he met Father Joseph Fitzgerald, vocations director for the Diocese of Rockville Centre, who helped him to discern the possibility of became a seminarian for the Diocese. After observing the need for Hispanic priests in some Long Island communities he decided to serve the people of God here. Deacon Marquez completed his seminary formation at Saint Joseph’s Seminary, Dunwoodie.
Deacon Alexander Turpin is a native of Wading River, where he was homeschooled by his parents, Dawn and Alex Turpin. It was his parents who brought him up in the Church and who first helped him fall in love with Jesus Christ. Deacon Turpin is a licensed pilot and graduated from Stony Brook University with a degree in art history and criticism in 2013.
Following philosophy studies at Cathedral Seminary in Douglaston, Bishop William Murphy of Rockville Centre asked Alexander to continue his formation for the priesthood in Rome at the North American College. He was ordained a Deacon at Saint Peter’s Basilica, on September 27, 2018. With the encouragement and support of Bishop Barres, Deacon Turpin is undertaking postgraduate training in the fields of liturgy and Christian art.
Deacon Roger Velasquez was born in El Salvador and raised on Long Island. His home parish is Saint Jude, Mastic Beach. After graduating from high school, through prayer, discernment and spiritual guidance, he entered Cathedral Seminary in Douglaston in 2010. He completed his time at Douglaston in 2015, earning a B.A. in Philosophy from Saint John’s University, Queens. Formation for priesthood took place at Saint Joseph’s Seminary, Dunwoodie, New York.
During his time in the seminary, Deacon Velasquez served at the Church of Saint Christopher, Baldwin; the Church of Saint Aidan, Williston Park; and the Cathedral of Saint Agnes, Rockville Centre, as well as Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in Manhattan.