An atmosphere of joy and celebration overflowed in the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels at the June 1 ordination ceremony and Mass for Father Cesar Magallón Bernal and Father Ismael Rigoberto Robles, new priests of the archdiocese.“This is a great day in the life of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. God is giving us two new priests today, so let’s thank God for that, and let’s pray for all our priests, our seminarians, and for more vocations,” said Archbishop José Gomez during his welcoming remarks.Speaking directly to both candidates during his homily, Archbishop Gomez reminded them that “God made you for a mission.”“You are to be the guardians of the flock of God. You are to be the protectors, the servants, the spiritual guides of the family of God. He’s sending you into the world, and the world needs you,” he said. “In your priestly ministries, you have the beautiful mission to bring God to hearts, to show men and women that God is real, that God is alive.“You are called to continue the work of Jesus,” continued the archbishop, noting that to accomplish this they should always love with the heart of Jesus and be men of compassion. “And finally, my brothers, I urge you: make the Eucharist the source of everything you do…. Make your life a Eucharist, an offering that you are always making to God.”At several points during and after the Rite of Ordination — which included the election of the candidates, the Litany of Supplication (when the candidates prostrate themselves before the altar), the laying on of hands, the Prayer of Ordination and the vesting of the new priests — the assembly which filled the Cathedral erupted into joyful and appreciative applause.Following the Mass, the newly-ordained priests — who will both begin their first assignments as associate pastors at their respective parishes on July 1 — bestowed blessings upon friends, family members and church-goers who lined up in the Cathedral plaza for up to three hours.Father Magallón, 36, described the ordination as a day “full of emotions — it was just indescribable,” adding that it was a “reminder from God to receive all His gifts and extend them to other people.”“[As priests] we often say we are not worthy, but I think that God chooses us and prepares us, and He is going to give us everything that we need so that we remain committed and faithful,” said Father Magallón, who is originally from Michoacán, Mexico. He celebrated his first Mass on June 2 at his home parish, St. Gertrude the Great Church in Bell Gardens, and has been assigned to Our Lady of Guadalupe Church in Santa Barbara.“I’m just honored that I was called to do this, and I’m looking forward to getting to work,” he said. “I’m excited to start my ministry, and invite people to experience God in a different way and find ways to remind people that God is always there.”Father Magallón’s father, Roberto Magallón, described the ordination as “a great day for our entire family.”“Just as God lent him to me, I am now giving him back — now he is a pastor for Him,” said the elder Magallón. “God chose this path for him. It makes me happy to see him realize his dream of becoming a priest, to reach his ultimate goal.”For Father Magallón’s mother, Rufina Bernal, the ordination was a “blessing from God.”“I imagine that this was my son’s mission from the time God placed him in my womb,” said Bernal, who traveled from Coahuila, Mexico for the ordination. “I feel so proud and happy.”Raquel Nieves, mother of Father Robles, shared similar thoughts about her son’s ordination.“I feel the love of God through my son and though all of my family members who are united here with happiness for this wonderful occasion to support my son, who felt the call of God from a young age,” said Nieves, a long-time parishioner at St. Juan Chrysostom Church in Inglewood. “As a mother, it’s an indescribable feeling. But above all else, it feels beautiful.”Father Robles, 28, said he felt the “outpouring of blessings and love” from his relatives and friends during and after the ordination Mass, which he described as “very uplifting, grace-filled and joyful.” After offering blessings for hours in the Cathedral plaza, he said he felt tired, but also “peaceful and happy all at the same time.”The experience, he added, “reaffirmed my vocation. I felt that I was doing exactly what I was called to do.”“My future ministry — that’s what brings me the most joy, to think about the people that I’m going to serve,” said Father Robles, who was born in Zacatecas, Mexico. He celebrated his first Mass as a newly-ordained priest at his home parish, St. John Chrysostom, and has been assigned to St. Pius X Church in Santa Fe Springs.“This is the beginning of a journey; it’s an adventure,” he added. “I don’t know where the Lord is going to take me, I don’t know where the Holy Spirit is going to lead me, but I’m excited.”Carlos Robles, Father Robles’ older brother, is excited for him as well.“As a priest, I know he will do a lot to help the community,” said Carlos. “I’m very proud of my brother for always staying on the right path. May God bless him in his ministry.”{gallery width=100 height=100}gallery/2013/0607/ordination/{/gallery}