After three years of serving the parishioners of Church of the Crucifixion, Glen Burnie, first as associate pastor and then as pastor, Father Erik Arnold has been reassigned as pastor of Our Lady of Perpetual Help, Ellicott City, effective Aug. 1.
Ordained in 1999, Father Arnold first traveled to Rome to complete his studies before serving as associate pastor of St. Louis, Clarksville, from 2000-2004. He was then assigned as associate pastor of Crucifixion and later named pastor.
“The main thing I will miss is the tremendous family feeling here,” said Father Arnold. “That’s what makes the parish so unique and special.”
Father Arnold will transition from serving the 350-family parish of Crucifixion to the 1,800-family parish of Our Lady of Perpetual Help. The priest said the size of Our Lady of Perpetual Help would have been intimidating if he hadn’t spent four years at St. Louis, which has more than 4, 350 registered families. He said having the experience of a larger parish will help in his leadership of his new parish.
“No matter where you go the hearts of the people that are there are all the same in the sense that we are all made in the image of God,” said Father Arnold.
He is looking forward to being involved in the life of the school. The school system in Howard County is very good but “a Catholic school can offer something that a public school can’t and that’s faith,” said Father Arnold with pride in this voice.
After former pastor Monsignor Richard Smith’s faculties to function as a priest were removed in recent months, the parish has regained strength through the help of Father Lawrence Adamczyk, associate pastor, and Bishop W. Francis Malooly, western vicar.
“In just opening up room for the Lord to be present, in all that we do, he will continue the healing that is already taking place,” said Father Arnold. “Just giving the Lord as much room to be active is where we will find the healing we need.”