Craig Bickel

Date of Ordination: May 5, 2013
Current Assignment: Saint Joseph the Worker, Haddon Township

The opportunity that I have been given to serve the Lord and his Church as a Deacon is a humbling one for which I am at once thankful and challenged. Thankful when I consider the mercy and forgiveness of God for me given a period of my past life when I rejected Him; and challenged to walk the walk of my vocation as a Deacon. As I have often said, the message I speak in my homilies is first meant for me and hopefully will benefit others as well.

I was brought up in the Catholic Church and provided the fortunate opportunity to attend parochial schools through High School. Sadly, I stopped practicing my faith when I went away to college. I became estranged from the Church and God throughout my twenties. But God never gave up on me.

In my late twenties, the Lord brought me back to Him and the Church through the witness of character in people I began to meet who all had one thing in common…a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. I had what is sometimes referred to as a born-again experience, recommitted as an adult to my baptismal promises and became actively involved in the Catholic Charismatic Renewal.

Even though I could not imagine then that I would one day be called to the Diaconate, I knew my life was changed forever. And so it was. I thank God for what he has done for me and for the opportunity in Christ to be for others what others have been for me.