Three-year assignment to begin July 1
From staff reports
Father Randy Stice, director of the Office of Worship and Liturgy for the Diocese of Knoxville since 2009, has been appointed associate director of the Secretariat of Divine Worship for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, effective July 1.
The Secretariat of Divine Worship carries out work for the USCCB in areas relating to the preparation and approval of liturgical books and texts in the United States; provides leadership in liturgical formation and sacramental catechesis; and serves as a resource for bishops and diocesan liturgical commissions and offices of worship seeking advice.
“This is a great honor for Father Randy and for the Diocese of Knoxville. We will miss him, but we also know he will do well and will continue to make the Catholic Community of East Tennessee proud,” Bishop Richard F. Stika said.
Father Stice will serve in his position with the USCCB for three years, with the possibility of renewal.
The new position will require Father Stice to move to Washington, D.C.
He will continue as director of Worship and Liturgy for the Diocese of Knoxville, and will now be assisted by Father Joe Reed, who has been appointed a co-director of the office by Bishop Stika.
Father Stice was raised Protestant and was active in missions, teaching English in the People’s Republic of China from 1980 to 1983, and training missionaries to speak English in Europe, Australia, and the United States. He was received into the Catholic Church in 1997.
Following his ordination in 2007, he served as a parochial vicar in two parishes. He was appointed director of the Office of Worship and Liturgy for the Diocese of Knoxville in 2009, diocesan master of ceremonies from 2011 to 2013, and pastor of St. Mary Parish in Athens in 2013.
Father Stice earned a licentiate in sacred theology from Mundelein Seminary in 2007 and an M.A. in liturgy from the Liturgical Institute in 2011. He has published articles in The Heythrop Journal, Sacred Architecture, and the Adoremus Bulletin as well as three books on the sacraments utilizing a rite-based approach.
“I am both humbled and excited about serving the conference of bishops as the associate director of the Secretariat for Divine Worship. I love the liturgy, and the secretariat, which is the full-time staff that serves the Bishops’ Committee on Divine Worship and all of the U.S. bishops, is involved in a number of exciting projects,” Father Stice said. “My office also works closely with a number of other offices at the conference, so I am looking forward to some very stimulating collaborations. An added attraction is that one of my seminary professors who was the adviser for my STL thesis on St. Teresa of Avila is now working at the Conference.”
Father Stice said the appointment came about when the USCCB began looking for a priest to serve on its staff who had specialized qualifications.
“There aren’t a whole lot of priests who have advanced degrees in liturgy, and so the Conference was looking for priests with that kind of qualification, and my name came up as someone who had studied at the Liturgical Institute,” he said.
At the USCCB, Father Stice will be working with the Secretariat, which coordinates the translation and publication of new liturgical books, serves as a resource for bishops and priests in the United States, oversees the liturgies for the semiannual bishops’ meetings, produces a monthly newsletter, and advises on internal USCCB events, such as the Fortnight for Freedom.
“So there will be a lot of variety in my job,” he said, adding that he begins work with the USCCB on July 1.
Before being assigned to St. Mary, Father Stice served as associate pastor at St. Mary Parish in Johnson City and at the Cathedral of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus.