GOOSE CREEK—The Adorno Fathers now have two new shepherds to guide the faithful.
Adorno Fathers Kevin Daborbor and Rufino Madridejos were ordained by Bishop Robert E. Guglielmone on June 22 at Immaculate Conception Church.
The Adornos, also known as the Clerics Regular Minor, currently serve in three areas of the Diocese of Charleston: Sumter, Spartanburg and the Charleston area.
A large crowd filled the church for the joyful yet solemn ceremony, including people who travelled from the Midlands and the Upstate, as well as fellow Adornos and diocesan priests, family, friends and supporters of the two new priests — some journeying from as far as New Jersey, the Philippines and Italy.
Bishop Guglielmone thanked the two men for dedicating their lives to Christ, and urged them to rely on God’s love and the Holy Spirit to do their work.
“With the power of the Holy Spirit, we can do all that God asks of us, and certainly more than we ever expected we can do,” he said. “You must be willing to work with others to minister the Gospel and to follow in the footsteps of Jesus himself.”
Father Daborbor is a native of the Philippines and is one of four children of the late Romeo Daborbor and Zenaida Daborbor. He first joined the Adornos in 2008, completed his college studies and professed his simple vows in the Philippines. In 2013, he came to the U.S. and earned his theology degree from Immaculate Conception Seminary School of Theology at Seton Hall University in New Jersey. During his journey to ordination, he served at St. Joseph Church in Lodi, N.J., Jesus Our Risen Savior in Spartanburg and Immaculate Conception in Goose Creek.
“My heart leaps up with joy to the Lord for the gift of ordination,” Father Daborbor said. “I am truly grateful that as a priest, I may become the image of Christ and living evidence that Christ is in our midst. I feel that God has really used me to be an instrument of grace through the ministry of priesthood.”
Father Daborbor said he was raised with a strong faith but had never seriously considered a vocation. Initially, he entered the seminary out of curiosity. As he studied, he said he discerned that God truly was calling him to serve as a priest.
“God has enlightened me with His grace to cling on to his providence and mercy,” he said. “I felt the grace of God in me when the bishop ordained me. It is now time for me to spread God’s grace to all people.”
Father Madridejos is also from the Philippines, and is the fourth of eight children of Rufino and Rita Madridejos. He said his journey to priesthood was a long one, spanning 10 years from the time he first entered the Adorno formation house in the Philippines in May 2008.
He earned a bachelor’s degree in classical philosophy with a major in religious education at Holy Trinity College Seminary in 2012 and professed his simple vows in 2013. He then came to the U.S. and joined the Adorno community in Ramsey, N.J. He also earned a master of divinity degree with a major in pastoral theology at Immaculate Conception Seminary School.
During the ceremony, he was vested by Adorno Father Ted Kalaw — who was elected as the 60th Superior General for the Adorno Fathers on July 11 — and Adorno Father John Paul Gasparini, the order’s vicar general.
Father Daborbor was vested by Adorno Father Edgardo Enverga, pastor of Jesus Our Risen Savior Church, and Father Gasparini.
Father Madridejos said he was especially thankful his parents were able to attend the ordination, and is looking forward to traveling soon to the Philippines to celebrate a Mass of Thanksgiving.
“Being ordained was an overwhelming and beautiful experience for me,” Father Madridejos said. “I really felt the love of the people, the overwhelming love and grace of God and a real appreciation for my order, the Adorno Fathers. Priesthood is a privilege. I really feel I have been called to be both a priest and a servant.”
Father Daborbor celebrated his first Mass on June 23 at Immaculate Conception Church, and Father Madridejos offered his first Mass at St. Anne Church in downtown Sumter.
Both priests are currently in South Carolina and waiting to hear where they will be permanently assigned.
Top photo, provided: Adorno Fathers Kevin Daborbor and Rufino Madridejos were ordained by Bishop Robert E. Guglielmone on June 22 at Immaculate Conception Church in Goose Creek.