Sunday, 07 July 2019 17:07

Rubbing elbows with saints in the making

Quincy’s Father Rankin, new parochial vicar at the Cathedral in Springfield, calls Rome experience ’inspiring‘

Fr. RankinThe ceiling of the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Springfield is inspired from the ceiling of St. Mary Major in Rome, a papal basilica that houses a spectacular and large piece of the Holy Crib, where Jesus lay after his birth in Bethlehem.

 For Quincy’s Father Dominic Rankin, who spent several years studying at the Pontifical North American College in Rome and then this past year, taking classes to receive a license in the Theology of Marriage and Family at the John Paul II Institute in Rome, the papal basilica is one of his favorites. It’s funny how the Holy Spirit works because his first assignment as of July 1, is parochial vicar at the Cathedral in Springfield.

 Father Rankin calls his experience in Rome “inspiring and exhilarating.” He says he loved the universality of studying there, oftentimes being surrounded by about 100 men in class, representing about 90 different countries.

 “In Rome, it is a profound encounter with the saints,” Father Rankin said. “You have the Apostles, the martyrs, the great evangelists, and the popes all there. But you also have the current day saints: the seminarians, the priests, and lay people who are all working toward sainthood. So, in that sense, we’re rubbing elbows with saints in the making.”

 Meeting and talking with Father Rankin, you’ll immediately notice his personable demeanor and love and enthusiasm for the Catholic faith. That’s a big reason why one year into his priesthood, he is not discouraged by negative headlines surrounding the Catholic Church and a culture that has slowly been turning away from believing in God.

 “Because it all comes down to Jesus Christ,” Father Rankin said. “If each and every day, you can see him working in your life and see him in work in the lives of others, you learn in those small moments to trust him in the big ones. Our hope is in him.”

 Father Rankin’s twin sister is also living out her vocation in service of the Lord. Sister Mary Thomas of the Holy Name of Jesus is a Dominican at the Monastery of St. Jude in Alabama.