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Diaconate program director to speak at Jubilee of Mercy event in Rome

The director of the archdiocese’s permanent diaconate program will be part of Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy celebrations this month in Rome – speaking May 27 to deacons from around the world about their vital role in serving the family.

Deacon Jim Keating will talk about "The Deacon and the Family" at the Basilica of St. Mary during the Jubilee of Deacons, May 27-29, a gathering of deacons and their families that is part of Pope Francis’ Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy.

"I am honored to have been invited to this event," Deacon Keating said. "My topic is very timely as the church reflects upon the meaning of marriage and family in the wake of Pope Francis’ exhortation, ‘The Joy of Love.’"

A member of St. Margaret Mary Parish in Omaha, Deacon Keating said the invitation was triggered by his book, "The Heart of the Diaconate," which gained the attention of an official with the Pontifical Council for the Promotion of the New Evangelization.

The deacon is sent from the family, as a husband and a father, to minister to families, Deacon Keating said. "From out of the heart of the family the deacon comes so he can go back into the family and help them heal or advance in holiness through his own ministry of the Gospel."

The Catholic Church has good news for Western culture in this time of confusion regarding the meaning of marriage, he said.

"Marriage is a sign that God is among us, loving us and giving us life," Keating said. "I hope to share ideas to help deacons get that message out to engaged and married couples, and couples suffering difficulties in their relationships."

The Jubilee of Deacons celebration will conclude with Mass May 29, the Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ, in St. Peter’s Square, celebrated by Pope Francis.

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