Bennett FeudnerBennett Feudner

College Program - Senior

Parish: Holy Family, Fond du Lac

Seminary: Immaculate Heart of Mary College Seminary

Birthday: December 9

Intercessor:  Blessed Solanus Casey and St. John Paul II

Tell us your vocation story.

I was born a cradle Catholic, so Catholicism took some time (and is still taking time) to become a true and definite reality to me. From Jesus being “that nice guy” who I read about, to a genuine person who has been trying to tell me how much He wants to love me for my entire life. As I began to change my life according to this reality, people began to tell me things like, “Have you thought about being a priest?” or, “Oh, you’d make a good priest” or even, “You will make a good priest.” I realized that they said these things because of the qualities I displayed, and I got mad. Why a priest? Why couldn’t I be a good husband? Aren’t these characteristics and qualities that every man should have? And so, a roadblock was built as I vowed to show the world how good of a man I could be without being a priest.

God allowed me to carve out that path for myself, growing in virtue, until I got to my second year in college at UWGB. A paranormal incident happened in one of my residents’ rooms, so they came to me—their Catholic RA—for help. It ended with no more problems, and the four girls praying their first rosary, praise God! After recounting the story to our college chaplain, he asked me, “Bennett, have you ever thought about going to the St. Andrew’s Dinner?” And there was the tally mark of ninety-nine people who have told me to think about being a priest. But strangely enough, I did not have the agitation that followed comments previously. Rather, a calm realization that I had never given the priesthood a genuine chance in my life. Since then, God has begun to reveal, more and more, the call He has placed on my heart from my first moment.

What is the greatest challenge facing a man considering the seminary?

I think the greatest challenge a man faces is himself. You might realize that what you’re doing is figuring out what God has made you for, but then after that, you realize that you don’t know yourself at all on the deepest level. To quote John Farris, “Every man is a mystery to himself.” The hardest part, for me, is to get over myself to ask God, “Who am I, LORD?” and accept whatever the answer is.

What is your favorite Psalm verse and why?

Psalm 51:10 is my favorite because it speaks of being renewed by God, which means that I can be reminded that it is not by my own power that I become a saint, but His. The comfort that comes with God’s promise to “put a new and right spirit within me” is enough to give lasting peace.

What are your favorite activities outside of the seminary?

I like to be active outdoors, read books, and enjoy laid-back time with friends. But I really love to either go rock climbing or sailing. Both activities are exhilarating and give me life!

Where do you like to go pray?

Praying in the oratory of the Shrine of Our Lady of Good Help is incredible. Knowing Mary’s presence there brings me close to God in a special way that makes prayer so fruitful. And of course, in front of the Blessed Sacrament is always a welcome treat.

Where do you do your best studying?

My best studying happens when I’m out in public. When I see people look at me it reminds me that I should be studying, haha!

Which saint should people ask to intercede for your vocation?

If you want to boost my vocation, please ask St. Pope John Paul II—he has taken patronage of my vocation.

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