COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. | The Rev. Jerry Bruggeman wept the other day when he saw his golden chalice.
It was stolen 22 years ago.
Bruggeman, of Colorado Springs, Colo., was given the chalice, engraved with his name, on the day of his ordination in 1949. He used it for 40 years during the Eucharist until it was taken from a cabinet of chalices at Corpus Christi Catholic Church on North Cascade Avenue.
The chalice was returned to him earlier this month, and after some refurbishing, it looks nearly as good as new.
"Miracles still happen," Bruggeman, 87, said.
It is customary for priests to receive a Eucharist chalice on the day of their ordination. The gift can be as special to them as wedding rings are to married couples.
Bruggeman's family funded the chalice, which is gold-plated silver with a strip of black onyx. On the bottom is engraved a blessing to Bruggeman's family that ends with, "Rev. Gerald Bruggeman, Ordained May 26, 1949."
In 1988, someone broke into Corpus Christi through a side door and stole the chalice, the only item taken, Bruggeman said.
I am Fr. Kyle Schnippel and currently am the Director of Vocations for the Archdiocese of Cincinnati. I believe there is a tide of vocations to the priesthood and religious life waiting to happen, and as the faithful continue to grow in their own pursuit of holiness, these vocations will flourish.