William Carmona Lopez was ordained a deacon and priest by the Most Reverend David R. Choby, DD, JCL, Bishop of Nashville on Monday, September 8, 2014 at Christus Santa Rosa Hospital Northwest. Father Carmona was ordained as he laid in his hospital bed surrounded by priests, seminarians, and many friends. Father William passed away at 2:40 p.m. on Wednesday, September 10. He was 51.
Father Carmona attended Assumption Seminary and was ordained for his Diocese of Nashville. Archbishop Gustavo García-Siller and Very Rev. Jeff Pehl concelebrated the Mass.
Carmona, a fourth-year theology seminarian who was entering his final year of preparation for ordination as a transitional deacon this fall and as a priest of the Diocese of Nashville, Tennessee, next summer, was dying of cancer.
When Bishop David R. Choby of Nashville learned of his grave condition after Carmona was rushed to the Christus Santa Rosa Medical Center the first week of September, he made plans to travel to San Antonio to ordain the seminarian immediately because of the emergency circumstances.
“The joy and satisfaction in administering the sacrament of holy orders is a high point in the life of any bishop, but to have the opportunity to celebrate the sacrament for one who is so much looking forward to ordination but faces the certainty of death made it the more poignant,” Bishop Choby said.
He left for San Antonio the evening of Sept. 7 and ordained the seminarian Sept. 8. On Sept. 9, Father Carmona was moved to hospice care. With a priest, deacon and two seminarians at his side, the newly ordained priest died mid-afternoon Sept. 10.
Born in Atioquia, Colombia on January 11, 1963, Father William had six brothers and six sisters. In his autobiography he wrote that he received his calling to discern the priesthood when he was twelve. He continued; “I was an altar server at my parish and I was inspired by the pastor of my parish who was a great example of service to God’s people…My father was a great influence on me because he was a dedicated man of prayer.”