The ordination of Deacon Haider to Holy Order will be live streamed on our web site. Click Here to Bookmark the page.
Deacon Haider Quintero will be ordained to the priesthood for the Diocese of Amarillo by Bishop Patrick J. Zurek during a Friday, May 13 Mass at St. Mary’s Cathedral, 1200 South Washington.
The Mass is scheduled to begin at 6:30pm. Coverage of the Mass will begin at 6:15 on St. Valentine Radio, 1360AM, KDJW and on the diocesan website, www.amarillodiocese.org/live.
Deacon Quintero, 39, was born March 25, 1972 in Ocaña, Colombia, South America.
After graduating from high school, he moved to Bogota, the capital city of Colombia, where he attended medical school for six years, receiving a degree as a medical doctor with an emphasis in Gerontology.
In 2001, Deacon Haider began his journey toward the priesthood, obtaining a degree in philosophy from Mount Angel Seminary in Oregon. He graduated as a theologian from the Pontifical Javeriana University in Bogota and is currently working on an online Licentiate in Religious Studies with the Pontifical Javeriana University.
Why the priesthood?
“I really think that God has different ways of calling,” said Deacon Haider. “He, in his infinite love and mercy calls each one of us, the people involved in ministry, as He pleases. I am quite sure that if you ask this same question to anyone, you will find very different answers.
“People often ask me about when exactly I heard God’s call, and I tell them I do not know. The reason is that I really believe that I have been feeling God’s call since I have the age of reason. It is why I identify my call with the Prophet Jeremiah’s call: “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you…” (Jer. 1:5 NAB). The Lord has his ways. “I had decided to join the seminary once I finished high school. I was 16 and my parents told me I needed to be more mature in order to make that decision. They really worked hard on it and made me change my mind. They did not want me to join the seminary. I do remember my parents telling me, ‘if you want to join the seminary you can do it after you finish a civil career.’ The truth is that they thought I would change my mind once I had finished my civil studies.
“I did finish and graduated at the medical school and worked for two years as a doctor in Bogota. I really think that the Lord did not extinguish the fire of my vocation in my heart throughout the entire time attending studies at the university. I never stopped my prayer life and attending Holy Mass on Sundays. Even though, my participation in the parish was limited to it because time did not allow me to do more. I did have beautiful experiences when working as a doctor.”
After setting up his practice, Deacon Quintero said his patients would come to him to talk, and the conversation would turn spiritual.
“People sometimes use to come to me and complain about their aches and pains but some also shared many profound stories from their lives,” he said. “They were asking for counseling and for a person to listen and console them. I kept asking God, ‘Why is this happening to me? What do you want from me?’ I believe all those blessed moments made me think once again about the priesthood. God needs people willing to bring healing and meaning to all who need it. Those are some of the reasons I decided to join the priesthood. I changed my mind, advised by my parents, when I was a teenager, but the Lord has his time and plans for me.
“It has not been easy to go through all this years of formation. I have lacked the support from some family members that still do not understand my decision. They consider as lost the time and money spent in the medical studies. I know the Lord has been guiding me and I just want to do his will in my life, and continue answering to his call in my heart.”
What goals does he have for his ministry?
“I just want to do my best in order to shepherd God’s people,” said Deacon Quintero. “I may think of some of the goals I would like to have for my ministry but time will show me better how to serve in a better way and according to the specific needs from the community I am working with.”
As he nears his May 13 ordination date, what’s going through Deacon Quintero’s mind?
“I think everything began when Bishop Zurek told me that I have been accepted to the Order of Presbyters. I have been getting ready since then with so many things I need to be prepared for that day. Nonetheless and in the middle of my business there are many feelings and thoughts in my mind. First of all I am very thankful to God for this particular call. I am experiencing a mixture of feelings right now such as happiness, nervousness, expectations and anxiety. I am doing my best in order to be fully prepared to live this wonderful experience. I just want to leave everything in the Lord’s hands, I am sure He is taking care of.”
Deacon Quintero’s ordination will mark the fifth ordination for the Diocese of Amarillo since Bishop Zurek was installed as the eighth Bishop of Amarillo on Feb. 22, 2008. Father Daniel Dreher and Father Nick Gerber were ordained June 7, 2008 at St. Thomas the Apostle Church, Amarillo. Father Barnabus Radke was ordained Feb. 21, 2009 at St. Laurence Cathedral (now St. Laurence Church), Amarillo and Father Arthur Rodriguez was ordained on May 29, 2010 at St. Mary’s Church (now St. Mary’s Cathedral), Amarillo.