Diaconate Convocation in Darien

DARIEN—Father Michael Bruno, assistant academic dean of St. Joseph’s Seminary in Yonkers, New York, will be the keynote speakers at the 2021 Diaconate Convocation of the Diocese of Bridgeport on Saturday, October 2, at St. John Church in Darien.

Father Bruno noted writer and speaker will discuss “St. Joseph: A Model of Diaconal Service.” Father Bruno’s keynote address will run from 9:30-11 am.

Bishop Frank J. Caggiano will celebrate Mass for the deacons and their wives at 11:10 am. Concelebrants will include Father Bruno, Msgr. Thomas Powers, vicar general of the diocese and Father Francis Hoffmann, diocesan vicar for clergy. Deacon Santos Garcia was the Deacon of the Mass and his wife Elba Garcia proclaimed the first reading in Spanish. Deacon Eric Keener was the Deacon of the Word and his wife Kathy read the Prayers of the Faithful.

The day-long convocation will include talks by Father Bruno, an overview of the global synod by Bishop Caggiano, an update on the state of the diaconate by Deacon Jerry Lambert, coordinator of diaconate formation and a talk by Dr. Kevin Johnson on Catholic Social Teaching.

Deacon John DiTaranto will lead morning prayer at 8:30 am, and Bishop Caggiano will present an overview of the upcoming global synod at 9 am.

The day-long program will also include talks for deacons wives.

Afternoon breakout sessions include Father Bruno speaking about “Preaching as an Encounter,” Father Francis Hoffmann will reflect on “Our Blessed Mother Mary and Her Yes,” and Dr. Lois Gandt of Sacred Heart University and Marianne Smythe will talk on “Exploring the Lives of Our Saints.”

Deacon DiTaranto and Dr. Patrick Donovan, director of the diocesan Institute for Catholic Formation, will facilitate an afternoon discussion on “Speed Faithing/Building up our Diaconate Community Activity.”

About Father Bruno

Father Michael Bruno, a native of Brooklyn, N.Y., and a priest of the Diocese of Brooklyn, serves as the dean of seminarians, director of institutional effectiveness, the department chair of Church History, and professor of Theology at St. Joseph’s Seminary. Since 2013, he has also served the Diocese of Brooklyn as Censor Librorum.

Before his appointment as a full-time faculty member in 2015, Father Bruno was parochial vicar of St. Luke Church in Whitestone, N.Y., and an adjunct professor at St. Joseph’s Seminary. His graduate studies were undertaken at the Pontifical Lateran University (Vatican City State), where he completed his licentiate in ecclesiology with a specialization in Church History (2011) and his doctorate in Sacred Theology (2014). He completed his baccalaureate in Sacred Theology (2009) at the Pontifical Gregorian University (Rome). He is an alumnus of Stonehill College, where he received his bachelor’s degree in History (2006) and Xaverian High School, where he is currently a member of the board of trustees.

His research interests include the theology of St. Augustine of Hippo, the intersection of history and theology, Late Medieval and Early Modern Church History. He is the author of “Political Augustinianism: Modern Interpretations of Augustine’s Political Thought” (Fortress Press, 2014), as well as articles and reviews for Augustiniana, Emmanuel Magazine, American Benedictine Review, Church History, and Homiletic and Pastoral Review. He is also a contributor to Saint Augustine as ‘Doctor Pacis’: Inquires on Peace for People Living Today (Editorial Uniagustiniana, 2018). In 2016, he was invited to Malta to deliver the Augustine Lecture at the University of Malta, entitled “Augustinian Insights into the Christian in Public Life.” In addition to weekend pastoral work in the Diocese of Brooklyn, he has also served on several diocesan commissions and committees.

The first class of permanent deacons of the Diocese of Bridgeport was ordained by Bishop Walter W. Curtis, second bishop of Bridgeport on February 25, 1978. At present, there are 83 active and retired deacons in the diocese.