This month Fr Thomas Kent was ordained to the priesthood by Bishop Richard Moth in the Cathedral Church of the Diocese of Arundel & Brighton in this time of coronavirus.
The ceremony was very different from normal, in that, only very few clergy, friends and family were able to gather to celebrate with him due to restrictions imposed by the Covid-19 pandemic. However, many others joined in the celebration via the Arundel Cathedral YouTube Channel, which live-streamed the ordination.
Fr Kent is from Wadhurst, East Sussex where his parents still live and whose Catholic parish church is the Sacred Heart. As a teenager he spent most of this period away from the Church, but at 18 his faith was reawakened once more and he was confirmed into the Catholic Church. Two years later he was accepted as a seminarian for the Diocese of Arundel & Brighton to be formed for the priesthood. He spent time for his formation in St Alban’s Seminary, Valladolid, Spain, St John’s Seminary, Wonersh, Guildford, Surrey and the last year in the parish of St Joseph’s, Guildford, Surrey.
On 11th July his call to the priesthood was realised when Bishop Moth ordained him a priest. He is now to be an assistant priest in the parish of Guildford, Surrey where he has already been working for the last year as a deacon. As public Masses are being restored once more for Catholics of the Diocese it is a wonderful moment for him to begin his new ministry as a priest.
Fr Kent said: “In this time of coronavirus it is a great privilege to be ordained a priest and to be able to celebrate Holy Mass for people’s needs and intentions especially those who have been affected in anyway by Covid-19.”
Fr Kent has many interests and hobbies which he has enjoyed whilst training for the priesthood which includes cooking, cycling, classic music, art and woodworking, and which he plans to carry on beside his priestly duties in the parish.
Bishop Moth said: “It was a real joy for me to ordain this young man to the priesthood. I look forward to working with him over the coming years and to supporting him in his ministry among the people of the diocese. May God grant him a blessed and fruitful ministry, and inspire other men to offer themselves for the priesthood in this diocese.”
Picture: Fr Thomas Kent and the laying on of hands by Bishop Richard Moth. (Arundel & Brighton Diocese).