CHARLESTON—Kathleen Fryml struggled to express the joy she felt as she watched her son Andrew’s ordination to the transitional diaconate. Though in the end, she didn’t need to say anything at all.
“She never cries, not even on our wedding day,” said her husband, Jady. He sat beside his wife as she attempted to control the tears streaming down her face shortly before the celebration held at Blessed Sacrament Church June 3.
“We’re just so proud for him,” Mrs. Fryml said. “We’re honored and humbled that God called on our son. Andrew knows he’s in the right place.”
This was special for the Frymls, but also the hundreds of supporters who came to celebrate with them. Most stayed to personally congratulate the diocese’s newest deacon at a reception afterward.
“I would like to thank everyone for coming this evening,” Deacon Fryml said. “This is a celebration not only for the ordination, but also for this parish and especially for the Diocese of Charleston that we celebrate a coming together to love the Lord and to know that just as I am being sent out to the vineyard, all of us by our baptism are being called.”
Some 20 priests from various parishes joined Bishop Robert E. Guglielmone for the ordination, including Father Trung Nguyen, rector at St. Mary’s Seminary in Houston, Texas, where the ordinand just completed his third year of theological studies.
During his homily, Bishop Guglielmone recited the list of traditional responsibilities Deacon Fryml will carry out in the transitional diaconate, among them to proclaim the Gospel, baptize, assist the bishop and pastor, and perform works of charity on their behalf.
The bishop then reminded the new deacon that his ordination is also “an opportunity to bring hope and love to those who are in need.”
“Pray well, work well in coordination with others who have devoted to ministry, and trust that the Lord God will continually offer you His grace so that you may respond well to all of the challenges you may encounter,” Bishop Guglielmone said.
Deacon Fryml has already embraced that opportunity as a volunteer at Isaiah House, a Catholic-run halfway house in Houston for men who have had long-term prison sentences and are learning to re-adjust to life outside of detention.
“The Lord is the one who has called on me to serve Him and God’s people,” he said. “It is He who has prepared me to serve and to be sent out into the vineyard. He chose me, as the bishop said, to be sent out among the lost, to have a listening ear to every person, to reach out to those who really need God’s love, God’s forgiveness.
“To be able to offer that, as a minister of the Gospel, I’m really looking forward to that opportunity,” Deacon Fryml said.
One of four children, he grew up in Moore, a small community 10 miles south of Spartanburg. The Frymls moved to Charleston three years ago, settling on Daniel Island. They are parishioners at St. Clare of Assisi.
The new deacon studied philosophy for two years at Presbyterian College before discerning his call to the priesthood. He completed his college seminary studies at St. Andrew’s Hall at Seton Hall University prior to enrolling at St. Mary’s Seminary.
Deacon Fryml is scheduled to be ordained as a priest on June 9, 2017, at the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist in Charleston. In the meantime, his family and friends will continue to treasure this moment.
“It’s the marvelous culmination of a journey for Andrew,” Mr. Fryml said. “It’s been precious to see him change to a man after God’s own heart, and as parents, we couldn’t ask for anything more.”
Top photo: Miscellany/Doug Deas: Bishop Robert E. Guglielmone blesses seminarian Andrew Fryml’s hands during the ordination to transitional diaconate held at Blessed Sacrament on June 3.