MASSILLON, Ohio — A 70-year-old widower with 10 children and almost two dozen grandchildren begins a new career Saturday — as a Roman Catholic priest.
Samuel Leonard was ordained Friday by Bishop Thomas Tobin of the Youngstown diocese.
Leonard will work in New Bedford, Mass. That’s where his religious order, the Institute of the Incarnate Word, runs St. Kilian Church.
Leonard wanted to enter the priesthood when he was a boy. But he fell in love and married the former Mary Steigerwald, and they were married for 42 years until her death in 1998.
Leonard says that after his wife died, he thought about the priesthood but didn’t think he could join because of his age.
A friend told him about the Institute of the Incarnate Word, which welcomed him with open arms despite his age.