Pastor's Message

Weekly letters offered by our pastor, Father Paul Counce, first published in The Carpenter, our Parish Bulletin

Coming in July!

Published: June 25, 2017

No, it’s not a new movie release, but it IS someone new to our Cathedral parish. As mentioned previously here in The Carpenter, newly-ordained Deacon Gary C. Mooney has been appointed as a Deacon Assistant at St. Joseph Cathedral Parish in Baton Rouge (and part-time Deacon Chaplain to Dixon Correction Institute in Jackson), effective Saturday, July 1, 2017. Gary has provided us with a little bio so that we could share a little about him, his family and his faith. We know you all are ready to welcome him with open arms!

I was born in New Orleans, Louisiana and moved to Baton Rouge when I was young. I received most of my elementary Catholic education at St. Thomas More but graduated from SS. Simon and Jude Catholic School in Huntington Beach California. My family moved there with my Dad’s job at Exxon for that year. I graduated from Broadmoor Senior High after the eleventh grade but attended Catholic High prior to that.

I graduated from Southern University Law School and am admitted to the Bar of Louisiana. My undergraduate degrees are from USL in Lafayette and New York State University.

I am married to Suzanne Quinlan of New Orleans and have four children and two grandchildren.

Prior to my ordination my wife and I were active in Lay Ministry as members of St. Gabriel Church. My wife is also a graduate of RSI with me and played an active supporting role in my journey to ordination. She is also an attorney with the State Board of Ethics.

I am a US Army and Navy veteran with over 27 years of combined service. I earned a Bronze Star in a combat deployment serving as an Intelligence Officer in Iraq in 2008. I had previously deployed to Afghanistan in 2002 where I was an Officer in Charge of a mine clearing detachment. My primary job in the Army stateside was that of a Judge Advocate General. I provided legal assistance to many soldiers during this time.

Polish Catholic Chaplains inspired me to seek ordination through their guidance and example. I am also a military linguist with an Army skill code in French and German. I study languages as a hobby with some fluency in Spanish and Italian. My diaconate studies have also inspired me to learn Latin as well.

I can’t say enough about how I matured spiritually through formation. I have even more admiration for our dedicated clergy who work tirelessly. I hope to be an asset to St. Joseph Cathedral Parish after a very warm welcome by Father Paul Counce.


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