This weekend, 32-year-old Anthony Infanti will be ordained a transitional deacon for the Diocese of Camden at Our Lady of Peace Parish in Williamstown.
The 10:30 a.m. Saturday liturgy marks Infanti’s final step on his journey to priestly ordination, a process that began when he first stepped into the halls of Philadelphia’s Saint Charles Borromeo Seminary as a year-one seminarian.
The South Jersey native recalled that, while growing up, “the priority for my family was Sunday Mass, religious education classes and daily prayer.”
“At our home parish, Saint Agnes (now Our Lady of Hope) in Blackwood, I was a part of the music ministry and was an altar server.”
It was those times in the company of the parish priests which proved most formative and influential to his current calling, he now remembers.
“In the priests’ presence, whenever I saw how they interacted with others, or how they performed their ministry, I felt closer to the Lord.”
As he prayed to the Lord and the Blessed Mother, and spoke with men in the seminary, he soon “felt God calling me to this life of service to his people.”
Infanti’s seminary formation has taken him to Saint Charles; Saint Mary’s Seminary in Baltimore, Maryland; and, currently, to Immaculate Conception Seminary at Seton Hall University in South Orange, New Jersey, where he recently completed Third Theology.
After his ordination by Bishop Dennis Sullivan, Infanti will receive his summer diaconate assignment before returning to Immaculate Conception in the fall. During the next academic year, he will divide his time between weekdays in South Orange and weekends at his parish diaconate assignment. He is expected to be ordained a priest of the Diocese of Camden next year.
For men currently discerning a call to the priesthood, Infanti stressed the importance of “prayer with God; one should have an open heart to understand (his) call.”
As well, he would tell them to seek, like he did, counsel from priests and religious.
“I’m happy and joyous with the decision I’ve made. I have kept Christ at the forefront of my life, and he has been with me. As long as we keep Jesus at the center, all things are possible,” he said.