I am a pretty positive and upbeat guy, blessed and happy to be Catholic and to be called by God to discern his holy priesthood.
Tell us your vocation story:
I was blessed to be raised in a great Catholic family growing up and I attribute a lot of my vocation to our family rosaries, question and answers, and talks about the faith. Although I definitely had a reverence for the priesthood growing up, it was never something I seriously considered when I was young, although somehow I knew it was a possibility. My own plans and desires were primarily for a family throughout high school and college, yet all throughout my getting ready to start my career and looking to start a family, I felt a nagging that I hadn’t yet discerned the priesthood. The first specific instance where I felt a tangible call came my junior year in college in front of the blessed sacrament in our chapel at school. Although I now knew I was at least called to discern, I unfortunately pushed aside the call, feeling it would de-rail my plans for my life. So I continued dating and began working in sales after graduation. After a lot of ups and downs in work and in my personal life, I finally made the decision to set aside time to pray each day. For the first time in my life, I devoted at least 20 minutes of quiet prayer a day and attended daily mass. That simple move allowed God’s voice back in my life in a more meaningful way, it let me see truly what my desire for my life was and how the priesthood fit perfectly within it, and it led me to finally accept His invitation to further discern the priesthood.
What is the greatest challenge facing a man considering the seminary?
I think two things. The first is the incredible amount of distraction there is that we let come in from the outside or seek out, and that hinders our prayer life, our conversation with God which is crucial to discern His will honestly. Keep in mind that God’s desire for you is also your deepest, truest desire, you just have to stop for a second and and recognize it! Secondly, for me, I had pre-conceived notions of what the seminary might be like, the guys that might be there, etc. Don’t wonder or make assumptions! Come by and set up a visit and see for yourself, I was totally taken aback by how awesome it was and is.
What is your favorite psalm verse and why?
Psalm 143. I began praying this in college when I was introduced to the liturgy of the hours by some friends. It’s realness and emotion is something I can often relate to and I think it shows the fullness of the Christian life.
What are your favorite activities outside of the seminary?
Playing tennis & basketball (which, luckily, I can participate in both here at the seminary as well!) I also enjoy water skiing, geography, and getting together with friends and family.
Where do you like to go to pray?
I love to pray at Sacred Heart Seminary in one of the three chapels there, or at St Francis at night on our prayer balcony.
Where do you do your best studying?
In the classrooms on the second floor at St Francis.
Which saint should people ask to intercede for your vocation?
St Thomas More & St Catherine of Siena.