WEST PALM BEACH | At a Mass Sept. 17, Bishop Gerald M. Barbarito reminded members of St. Ann Parish that they are part of a family of faith called to reach out beyond walls to spread the message of God’s love and mercy.
While he was presiding at the formal installation of Father Quesnel Delvard as pastor of St. Ann, the bishop also celebrated the parish as “a place in which we all cooperate, work together, support each other in the faith, the faith that we have in Jesus Christ, and in the mission of Jesus Christ.”
The standing-room-only crowd inside St. Ann Church was commended by the bishop for building up the Catholic faith through the years and being a beacon of light for the community. In particular, Bishop Barbarito mentioned St. Ann Place Outreach Center, Our Lady of Faith Haitian Center and St. Ann School, along with vibrant sacramental and religious education programs.
“The talent and the ability to reach out in so many different ways in this community is an inspiration in the life of the Diocese of Palm Beach,” the bishop said.
The brief pastor installation ceremony included reading of the bishop’s letter of appointment, renewal of Father Delvard’s priestly promises, then having the pastor lead the faithful in the profession of faith.
“I think we have a wonderful family here. One of the finest is St. Ann’s community, and I think with your new pastor, you and he will work together in reminding us of what the meaning of our faith is all about and supporting us in that faith,” Bishop Barbarito added.
Prompted by the bishop, Father Delvard agreed to accept the responsibilities of priest and pastor, uniting himself “more closely to Christ to bring his peace and love and the Holy Spirit to the people of the parish of St. Ann.”
“May the Lord, my brother, continue to keep you in his love, keep you close to him always, and may he bring all of us, you as pastor and all the people of St. Ann, to eternal life,” Bishop Barbarito said.
Near the conclusion of the liturgy, Father Delvard had many people to thank, starting with the bishop “for believing in me, for entrusting the beautiful parish of St. Ann to me.” He also expressed appreciation for his fellow priests serving at St. Ann, Father Marc Gustinelli and Father Brendan Cosmas, and Deacons Gino Aceto, Jojo Guardiario and Mike McDonald.
Continuing his list of gratitude, he pointed out Susan Demes, principal of St. Ann School, with teachers and staff; members of the parish and finance councils; concelebrating priests and Father Brian King, episcopal secretary; altar servers; the youth choir members; and all others who made it a special liturgy.
“Today’s not about me, it’s about us. The bishop said that very well. As a family, we are one family in the Lord,” Father Delvard said.
“To all of you as I was installed as your pastor, I’m honored to serve and happy to serve,” he said. “To tell you the truth, the bishop mentioned this is my seventh month. I’m very happy at what we’ve been doing and have accomplished so far. It’s because we work together. That’s the whole thing.”
Reflecting the multicultural makeup of the parish and Father Delvard’s linguistic abilities, he offered brief messages in Creole and Spanish.
“I pledge to you, I will do my best to lead you to Christ. That’s my job. To lead you to Jesus, and you lead me to Christ as well, and we do that as a family. Once again, thank you to all of you for your support and your love as I begin my ministry here,” he said.
To learn more about St. Ann Parish, visit https://stannchurchwpb.org/ or connect on Facebook.