My name is Fr. Emil Parafiniuk, and I am very happy, because of the fact, that I am starting my service in the Diocese of Brooklyn!
I am 38, and I was ordained as a priest in 2008 in the Diocese of Warszawa-Praga, Poland. I had been a vicar for 3 years and after that, I was a Director of the Youth and Young Adults Office in my Diocese. I was responsible, in my diocese, for the “Days in the Diocese” – the first stage of WYD in Cracow too. In 2016 I was nominated as a Director of The National Office for World Youth Days and Executive Secretary of the Youth Ministry Council (Polish Bishops’ Conference). I was involved in vocational work too, as a coordinator of European Vocations Service (and Executive Secretary of the „Vocations” Section in The Council of Bishops’ Conferences of Europe – CCEE).
As you can read, all my priestly life I have worked with young people and youth ministries. Of course, I have some other interests too – I love traveling, meeting people, discovering new cultures, new places, and especially, new cuisines. I am interested in traditional and social media and new technologies. But also, I like to drink a good coffee while working – with no sugar, no milk.
Pope Francis said in Cracow:
“But in life, there is another, even more dangerous, kind of paralysis. It is not easy to put our finger on it. I like to describe it as the paralysis that comes from confusing happiness with a sofa. In other words, to think that to be happy all we need is a good sofa. A sofa that makes us feel comfortable, calm, safe. A sofa like one of those we have nowadays with a built-in massage unit to put us to sleep. A sofa that promises us hours of comfort so we can escape to the world of video games and spend all kinds of time in front of a computer screen. A sofa that keeps us safe from any kind of pain and fear. A sofa that allows us to stay home without needing to work at, or worry about, anything. “Sofa-happiness”! That is probably the most harmful and insidious form of paralysis, which can cause the greatest harm to young people.”
So, I have decided to get up from my “sofa” and start a new mission. I have chosen the Diocese of Brooklyn in the USA. New culture, new environment, the new style of the Church, new challenges.
Bishop DiMarzio has accepted my application – and I am here with you! Maybe not in person yet (because of the travel restrictions), but now I am just waiting for a possibility to travel.
I would like to share my experience, to learn, and to work not for you – but with you.
I am very grateful for a very warm welcome, which I have experienced from Fr. Joseph Gibino and all the Staff of the Secretariat for the Evangelization and Catechesis.
I want to work with you for and with young people of the Diocese of Brooklyn, with all my abilities and all my energy. I want to share with you all this amazing hope, which comes from the Holy Spirit.
I want to be at your disposal – especially in these crazy times. Now, we can see that we have a lot of difficulties. Let’s make these difficulties into challenges! Why? Because difficulties make us unhappy and said – challenges are motivating us for better work in the Lord’s Vineyard!
I am very happy because of the opportunity to work with you – now It is possible online only. But we know very well, that Gospel and Holy Spirit do not know borders and distance.
I am praying for you – please, pray for me!
Fr. Emil Parafiniuk