WelCom November 2021
On 2 October, Alfred Tong, a seminarian at Holy Cross Seminary in Auckland, was ordained a transitional deacon for the Archdiocese of Wellington. Archbishop Paul Martin sm ordained Alfred along with Adam Kirkeby for the Hamilton Diocese, and Monty Bamford for the Christchurch Diocese. The Ordinations to the Holy Order of Deacons took place at St Mary’s Pro-Cathedral in Christchurch.
Alfred began his training at Holy Cross Seminary in 2016. After growing up in Upper Hutt and attending St Patrick’s College, Silverstream, Alfred studied pharmacy then became an environmental scientist with a PhD from Otago University. During his time in Dunedin, it was seeing the simple things the chaplain did for others that made Alfred consider priesthood instead of academia.
‘What made me decide “yes” was people’s need for God’s presence in their lives, especially when they needed someone to listen to, to have a coffee with, to be comforted that God is with them.’
Alfred says, ‘attending to these very human challenges, along with Jesus and his compassion and love, present in all situations and people, has given my life an extraordinary level of meaning and peace’.
Alfred will spend some time back at Holy Cross Seminary until mid-2022, when after a time in parish ministry in the Archdiocese, he ‘will hopefully be ordained to priesthood’.