Episcopal Vicar for Education and Adult Faith Formation, the
Very Rev Fr Vincent Glynn has last weekend spoke
n about the symbol and meaning of the image of an anchor as an image of Christ.
Speaking on his 40th anniversary of ordination to the priesthood, Fr Vincent told the congregation at St Gerard’s Church, Mirrabooka Parish, that in his prayer and meditation, he has come to know and experience that his relationship with Christ both personally and communally is an anchor in his life.
“This anchor keeps me centred and safe in the storms of faith and life and there have been many,” Fr Vincent explained.
“My priesthood and ministry is nothing if it is not centred and anchored in Christ who is God present with us,” he said.
Present for the occasion was Auxiliary Bishop Don Sproxton, Vicar General, the Very Rev Fr Peter Whitely VG, Emeritus Vicar for Clergy, Fr Brian McKenna, Tribunal of the Catholic Church Director, Fr Greg Carroll, Co-ordinator, Parish Renewal, Fr Nino Vinciguerra, Mirrabooka Parish Priest, Fr Daniel Chama and Assistant Priest, Fr Matteo Verdi, Midland Assistant Fr Rodrigo Da Costa Ponte and Cottesloe Assistant Priest, Fr Liam Ryan.
More than 400 parishioners, friends and family – including parents Thomas and Maureen Glynn, sister and three brothers and their wives and children – were present for the occasion at St Gerard’s Church, his home parish when growing up and where Fr Vincent celebrated his first Mass after ordination in 1982.
The eldest of six children, a young Vincent attended early primary school firstly at Our Lady of Lourdes Nollamara and then as a foundation student at the new parish of St Gerard Majella, Mirrabooka in 1965, graduating from the former CBHS Highgate in 1975.
In 1976, he began studying for the priesthood at St Charles’ Seminary in Guildford and completed his training at St Francis Xavier Seminary in Adelaide.
He was ordained a priest in December 1982 by Archbishop Lancelot Goody in St Mary’s Cathedral, Perth and went on to serve in the parishes of Carlisle, Leederville, Kalgoorlie-Boulder, Nollamara, Embleton, and Floreat-Wembley.
It was upon the completion of his Licentiate in Sacramental Theology from the Pontifical University of Sant’Anselmo in Rome in 1991 and upon his return to Perth that Fr Glynn found his priestly ministry in the areas of education and faith formation.
Fr Glynn was also the Director of the Maranatha Institute for Adult Faith Education (now the Centre for Faith Enrichment) from 1999 to 2005, and from 2009 until 2020, was a Senior Lecturer in Sacramental Theology at Notre Dame University Fremantle.
In his homily for the occasion, Fr Vincent explained that the angel says to Joseph, ‘Be not afraid, to take Mary home as your wife’.
“When we discern that we are asked to do something by God, it can fill us with fear,” Fr Vincent said.
“Giving our life to God can make us
afraid, because it does require a faith and trust in God, it may bring
uncertainty, take us on a journey or to live a life we do not expect or plan
for ourselves,” he said.
“This is true in my call to the vocation of priest. There was a fear, that could only be overcome through trust in God,” Fr Vincent exclaimed.
The first reading and the Gospel, continued Fr Vincent, tell us that the child the Virgin would give birth to is the Emmanuel – a name which means ‘God is with us.’
“Jesus is God present with us; God is not some remote being but is present here with us on our journey of life and faith,” Fr Vincent explained.
“This presence can help us overcome the fear of giving our life to God.
“My anniversary is a time to acknowledge and reflect on the presence of God in my life, made present in my ministry, the parishes I have served and the people I have educated,” he concluded.