Called to serve

by Joe Bollig
joe.bollig@theleaven.org

KANSAS CITY, Kan. — An archbishop couldn’t get a better present for his anniversary of ordination as a priest.

Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann ordained transitional deacon Shawn Tunink a priest for the Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas May 24 through the ancient apostolic tradition of the laying on of hands.

“Today is also very special to me personally as I observe the 33rd anniversary of my priestly ordination,” the archbishop said in his homily.

“I never, in my wildest dreams 33 years ago, thought that I would have the privilege of ordaining a priest on the same day,” he continued. “Shawn, thank you for providing me with the perfect way to celebrate the anniversary of my ordination as a priest.”

The ordination of Father Tunink, 31, was held at the Cathedral of St. Peter in Kansas City, Kan., on the eve of the solemnity of Corpus Christi. Father Tunink was the only priest ordained for the archdiocese this year.

In his homily, Archbishop Naumann warned against clericalism, or the assumption that the clergy are superior to laypeople. He said the proper answer to this tendency is not to deny the priesthood, but to find its true meaning in Christ.

“The answer to clericalism is not for priests to deny their identity, but rather to be what Jesus called his apostles and their successors to be — servant leaders of his people,” he said.

The archbishop also thanked Father Tunink’s parents, Duane and Peggy Tunink, for passing on the gift of faith to their children. He noted that Peggy was Father Tunink’s second-grade religious education teacher.

Archbishop Naumann was the ordaining bishop and principal celebrant of the liturgy, with Archbishop Emeritus James P. Keleher and 39 other priests con- celebrating. Msgr. Vincent Krische, pastor of St. Ann Parish in Prairie Village, and Father Doug Martis, from the University of St. Mary of the Lake / Mundelein Seminary, vested Father Tunink.

Father Tunink celebrated his first Mass on May 25, at the St. Lawrence Catholic Campus Center in Lawrence. His first assignment is as associate pastor at Most Pure Heart of Mary Parish in Topeka. He will also serve as chaplain at Hayden High School and for the Archdiocesan Catholic Committee on Scouting.

Father Tunink was born in Leavenworth and raised in Lansing. He graduated from Lansing High School in 1995 and from the University of Kansas with a bachelor’s of science degree in computer science in 1999.

He worked as a computer software engineer for Sprint before entered the University of St. Mary of the Lake/Mundelein Seminary in 2002.

 

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