Deacon Andrew Hamilton to be ordained to the priesthood; Third man to be ordained from Ford City Parish
GREENSBURG – The Most Reverend Larry J. Kulick, JCL, Bishop of Greensburg, will ordain Deacon Andrew Hamilton, a Ford City native, to the priesthood on Saturday, June 3, at Blessed Sacrament Cathedral, Greensburg. The Rite of Ordination Mass will begin at 10 a.m.
Deacon Hamilton, a parishioner of Christ, Prince of Peace Parish in Ford City, becomes the third man from the parish in the last decade to be ordained to the priesthood in the Diocese of Greensburg.
Deacon Hamilton joins Father Tyler J. Bandura, Pastor of St. James Parish, New Alexandria, ordained in 2013, and Father Eric J. Dinga, Pastor of Christ, Prince of Peace Parish and St. Lawrence Parish in Ford City, who was ordained in 2015.
Father Tyler J. Bandura
Pastor, St. James Parish, New Alexandria
Director of Priestly Vocations
Father Eric J. Dinga
Pastor – Christ, Prince of Peace Parish, Ford City
St. Lawrence Parish, Cadogan
“I believe that is a testament to the leadership of the parish and an example of parish priests who have formed these men and have been an example,” Bishop Kulick said. “It is also a wonderful example of the faith of the community as an environment that shapes and supports priestly discernment and vocations.”
Deacon Hamilton graduated as salutatorian of his Ford City High School Class of 2015. He went on to major in history at Saint Vincent College in Latrobe. It was through an invitation by other faith-filled young people at Saint Vincent College that Deacon Hamilton returned to the sacraments. His new zeal in faith caused him to consider the seminary and the priesthood.
After touring a minor seminary on a whim, Deacon Hamilton realized he could study to be a priest: “A question consistently popped into my head: ‘If not me, then who?’”
In 2016, Deacon Hamilton was accepted into the priestly formation program in the Diocese of Greensburg. In the spring of 2019 Deacon Hamilton graduated from Gannon University and completed college and minor seminary at St. Mark Seminary, both in Erie. On May 12, Deacon Hamilton graduated summa cum laude from Saint Vincent Seminary, earning both his Master of Divinity and Bachelor of Sacred Theology degrees.
“Whenever you start seminary, it seems like an insurmountable mountain to climb,” Deacon Hamilton said. “Part of my life has been looking back on the blessings that have been bestowed upon me throughout my journey.”
Leading up to his ordination, Deacon Hamilton is reflecting on the journey and is drawing all of the people who were part of his journey and prayed for him into his own prayers.
Bishop Kulick said Deacon Hamilton has had an opportunity to be the recipient of a wealth of experience in priestly formation through many years of seminary formation.
“The culture of formation is something that he has immersed himself in. He has a great love for theology and a great zeal for evangelization, and he is excited and energized to be among the people to proclaim the gospel and teach the faith as Christ has reminded us to do,” the Bishop said.
After his ordination, Deacon Hamilton, the son of William and Donna Hamilton of Ford City, plans to celebrate his first Mass at his home parish.
Deacon Hamilton’s Ordination Mass will be livestreamed from Blessed Sacrament Cathedral on the Diocese of Greensburg Facebook page and YouTube channel.