On June 8, homegrown Alaskan Kevin Klump entered into the sacrament of holy orders when he was ordained a transitional deacon at Our Lady of Guadalupe Co-Cathedral in Anchorage. When Anchorage Archbishop Paul Etienne laid his hands on Klump’s head for the ordination, Klump entered into a life of avowed prayer, celibacy and obedience to the archbishop and his successors. He is scheduled to be ordained to the priesthood next summer.
Sitting with him on June 8 were his parents, two grandparents and several siblings and lifelong friends.
The Catholic Anchor connected up with Klump after the ordination to see what was going through his mind that evening.
What did it mean to you to have your family and extended family with you for this momentous occasion?
I was so happy to have my family at my ordination. I was especially moved by my little brother, Samuel, and my grandparents who took the time, energy and money to fly up for the ordination Mass. To have the strength of the domestic church surrounding me was a great gift.
What role did your family play in your discernment to the priesthood?
Each of my family members has played an integral role in my discernment. My father introduced me to the love of the Eucharist, to the love of our Blessed Lord’s sorrowful mysteries and to the great good of confession.
My mother taught me how to pray. They both were very neutral during my discernment process — not wanting to influence me either way — which was a great benefit to me.
The marriage of my older brother, Patrick, and his wife, Alison, was a great spur for me in my vocation. It was profoundly moving to see the love of Christ for his church and of the church for Christ in them.
My little brother, Samuel, was very influential in forming an integrated conscience in me. My little sister, Monica, was also very influential in our many spiritual conversations that we would share — these were a great delight. I have also benefitted much from my sister, Rebecca, and my other little brother, Justin. She has helped me develop a more mature spiritual life and he has greatly inspired me by his devotion.
What was going through your mind as you lay prostrate on the cathedral floor during the litany of the saints?
Very simply, I was imploring (the saints) help to be a holy deacon and to serve the Eternal Word with generosity.
What does it feel like to cross the “point of no return” and finally enter into holy orders?
It was really very moving to be received by my older brothers — much more tried and proven than I — in the diaconate. It has been a joy to share the Word of God with some of the communities with whom I have been close over the years. I was greatly mortified by the gift of Christ in the Eucharist for me and for his people. I am greatly mortified to minister the chalice of the Lord’s blood to people who are probably much holier than I. I am striving to be obedient to the call of God to be generous in my vocation.
Where will you be for your final year before ordination to the priesthood?
I will be at Sacred Heart in Wasilla, Our Lady of the Lake in Big Lake, St. Michael’s in Palmer, St. Bernard’s in Talkeetna, St. Philip’s in Trapper Creek, Holy Family in Glenallen, St. Mary’s in Kodiak, Holy Rosary in Dillingham and then back at the seminary in St. Paul, Minnesota.