CHARLESTON—Bishop Robert E. Guglielmone will ordain Deacon Rhett Butler Williams to the priesthood on June 8 at 6 p.m. in the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist, 120 Broad St.
He will celebrate his first Mass at the Cathedral on June 10 at 11:15 a.m.
Born and raised in the Charleston area, Deacon Williams is a son of Ricky and Cindy Williams of Mount Pleasant. He spent his youth primarily focused on sports, particularly baseball, basketball and soccer.
He attended Bishop England High School for academics and athletics, not religion, he said. But along the way, he became drawn to the faith, and began a process of exploration.
After graduation, he spent three years in a Catholic community in El Salvador with the Peace Corps. That immersion fast-forwarded his conversion and Deacon Williams officially entered the Church in 2005.
The years following began a deep discernment, but Deacon Williams said it was still a long process to believing he was called to the priesthood. It was during a time of study in the religious culture of Madrid that he was lifted to live his faith.
Deacon Williams attended the Theological College at Catholic University of America. One of his favorite classes was homiletics, he said, adding that he has a bit of the “Southern preacher” in him, which people may see at his first Mass.
Top, file photo, Miscellany/Doug Deas: Bishop Robert E. Guglielmone applauds Deacon Rhett Williams after ordaining him to the transitional diaconate on May 26, 2017, at St. Joseph Church in Columbia.