What seminary are you attending and where are you in the formation process?
I am currently attending Saint Paul Seminary in St. Paul. I am in theology 1 or as the new terminology that Rome has just asked us to begin using, I am in configuration stage 1.
When is your birthday?
My birthday is Oct. 18. I just turned 25 years old.
What’s your home parish?
My home parish is St. Benedict’s in Duluth, though now that it is clustered with St. John’s, as well, I can also be found helping there when I am home.
Tell me a little about your family.
My father is a deacon at my home parish. He just retired from his job and is more active in his ministry now. My mother is a convert to the faith when I was very young. She now works as a paraprofessional with the Duluth School District at Myers-Wilkins Elementary school. I have one younger brother who just graduated from Lake Superior Community College and is also working as a paraprofessional with the Duluth School District at Ordean Middle School. He is also an active member of the UMD Newman community and can often be seen in the photos of that community.
Is there an email address where people can write to you?
An email address people can write me at if they truly want to is [email protected].
If people wanted to ask the intercession of a particular saint for you, what saint would you choose?
I have devotions to many saints, but my top three are St. Patrick, St. Joseph, and St. Michael the Archangel, but there are many others, so more then praying to one of these three I would say pray to their personal favorite saint, because they’re probably on my long list of favorites as it is.
What are some of the things you like to do in your spare time?
In my spare time, one of the things I love to do is paint. I paint landscapes, mostly, but the painting I am prouder of is my statue restoration. I have done many for my family and the seminary community and soon the stations of the cross that I have done will go up in the new Stella Maris High School chapel. You can even talk to Bishop Felton about my work, as I have restored a piece for him, as well.
What is your favorite devotion (and why)?
My favorite devotion is simply the rosary. It is a devotion I have been able to do since I was young and has had monumental change in my life. As Jonathan Roumie, who plays Jesus on “The Chosen,” just said at the March for Life in Washington, D.C., “I don’t need to sell it, just pray it and find out.”
What’s the best thing about your home town?
The best thing about my home town of Duluth is that although it is a “big city,” you’re never far from being able to connect with nature, whether that is Lake Superior or any of the woodland patches scattered throughout town.
What person has been the biggest help to you so far as you discern a call to the priesthood?
The person that has been the biggest help in my discernment is hard to nail down. There are so many people who have helped me in my discernment, from my friends, family, formators, vocation directors, bishops, and spiritual directors, they have all played their own part in my discernment, but (and this may be a bit of a cop out answer) the biggest help has of course has come from Jesus, who called me on this journey to begin with.
If someone asked you how to grow as a disciple of Jesus, what’s your best advice?
If someone asked how to grow in discipleship with Jesus, I would simply say to pray, especially with Scripture. That is God’s words, and he is uniquely speaking to each of us through it.
What does the priesthood mean in the life of the church?
What the priesthood means in the life of the church is as a sign of Jesus in this world. When a priest is in a good spiritual relationship with Jesus, it reflects in his care over his flock and makes Jesus present in the world. There is so much more then that but that is the tip of the iceberg for me.