Class: IV College
Parish: Mary, Mother of the Redeemer, North Wales
What year did you enter the seminary?
What did you do prior to seminary entrance?
I graduated from North Penn High School in June of 2009 and entered the seminary in August.
What influenced your decision to enter the seminary?
Through my youth, I became involved more and more in different activities within my parish. I was active in the youth group, I became an altar server and a lector, and I played in different music groups for Sunday Mass. As I went through high school, I was increasingly aware of God’s call to enter the seminary. During my junior year of high school, I studied in Germany and it was during that year that I finally decided that it was truly God’s will that I discern the Priesthood and enter St. Charles. My pastor at the time was incredibly instrumental in helping me to recognize God’s call in myself. The numerous transitional deacons assigned to our parish over the years showed me by example the joy that can come from answering God’s call. Also, my parents brought me up to be strong in my faith and so with such a foundation, it was easy to properly discern and eventually apply and enter St. Charles.
Why do you want to be a priest?
I want to be a priest so that I may serve our Lord by giving my life in every way I am able and that by doing so I hope to bring the light of Christ to those who are most in need of Him.
What did your family and friends think about your decision to enter the seminary?
Despite being somewhat surprised when I told them of my decision, my family has been my greatest support through the application process and their support continues to guide me through my formation to the Priesthood. Coming from public school, many of my friends were unable to understand my decision. Sacrifice is a concept that is mostly foreign to today’s society and so to say that I was entering the seminary and so giving my life to God was something that many friends couldn’t understand. However skeptical they were of my decision, my friends were eventually able to accept that what I wanted to do was going to bring me the greatest happiness and fulfillment.
What do you do for fun?
I enjoy playing music when I can. I play violin, piano, and organ. I also like going out with friends to dinner and the movies and I like to cook.
Who is your favorite Saint?
St. Cecilia is my favorite Saint because she is the patroness of music. Also, her martyrdom shows the ultimate sacrifice we should all pray that we could make to follow Christ, even unto death. Looking to her example, even in many smaller ways, I hope to make the sacrifices necessary to better serve Christ and His Church.
What advice would you give to a young man thinking about the seminary?
I think the best advice is to place all your trust in God. Most fears a young man can have about possibly entering seminary come from what he is able to do and what his limitations are. If we trust in God, there can be no question that He will provide for all of our weaknesses. If it is truly God’s will that a man become a priest, God will see him through all hardship. My favorite line in the prayer of ordination is this: “May God who has begun this good work in you bring it to fulfillment.” In the end, it is not about what we can do on our own, but what we can do with God. This is where we must find our strength.