Posts Tagged ‘Vocation’

Reflections from a Jesuit Brother

Jesuit Brother Pat DouglasShare

Jesuit Brother Pat Douglas, who has a master’s in counseling and works with youth in detention centers and with alcoholic recovery on the Rosebud Reservation in South Dakota, says the most common response he gets when people learn about his vocation is: “Why would you just be a Brother?”

Br. Douglas says that while it hurts to hear this comment because “just” denotes some kind of lesser than or lacking, the question does seems to reflect many people’s thoughts on vocation in the Catholic faith.

He writes, “There seems to be a mentality that if one wants to serve God it can only be done through the priesthood…If God is the focus of one’s life it can never be a ‘just’ or lacking in any way.”

As far as his desire to serve as a brother, rather than a priest, he writes, “I guess one never fully knows and that is where faith comes in, but I do know what makes my heart happy and my soul sing and that is being a brother.”

Without the priorities specific to the vocation of a priest or married man, such as sacramental ministry or children, Douglas writes that as a brother he is “free to focus all his energy on his prayer, work and community life.”

Read more of Douglas’s reflections on being a Jesuit brother.

A Jesuit’s Journey to his Vocation

Jesuit Kevin SpinaleShare

Jesuit Kevin Spinale, who entered the Society of Jesus five years ago, says his decision to become a Jesuit came slowly: “I didn’t fall off a horse or anything. I had no desire to do this in high school or college.”

Spinale graduated from two Jesuit schools —  Boston College High and Holy Cross — but did not feel called to the priestly vocation in general or the Jesuits in particular. Two years in the Peace Corps in Romania proved to be eye-opening for him.

“I’d find myself by myself,” Spinale said. “You get to do a lot of thinking, and something started to bite on my conscience or get me to think about what God is.”

Spinale wrote Jesuit Father John Brooks, the former president of Holy Cross and a friend and mentor from his college days. “I told him, ‘I’ve got this sort of subtle biting thing on my conscience,’” Spinale said. “He wrote back, ‘I thought you would ask me about that six years ago.’”

Read more about Spinale and his vocation in the BC High Today magazine.

A Jesuit's Journey to his Vocation

Jesuit Kevin SpinaleShare

Jesuit Kevin Spinale, who entered the Society of Jesus five years ago, says his decision to become a Jesuit came slowly: “I didn’t fall off a horse or anything. I had no desire to do this in high school or college.”

Spinale graduated from two Jesuit schools —  Boston College High and Holy Cross — but did not feel called to the priestly vocation in general or the Jesuits in particular. Two years in the Peace Corps in Romania proved to be eye-opening for him.

“I’d find myself by myself,” Spinale said. “You get to do a lot of thinking, and something started to bite on my conscience or get me to think about what God is.”

Spinale wrote Jesuit Father John Brooks, the former president of Holy Cross and a friend and mentor from his college days. “I told him, ‘I’ve got this sort of subtle biting thing on my conscience,’” Spinale said. “He wrote back, ‘I thought you would ask me about that six years ago.’”

Read more about Spinale and his vocation in the BC High Today magazine.

Jesuit Named Rector of Archdiocese of St. Louis Seminary

Jesuit Father John Horn

Lisa Johnston/St. Louis Review

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Jesuit Father John Horn has been named the next rector and president of Kenrick-Glennon Seminary in Shrewsbury, Mo., seminary of the Archdiocese of St. Louis, effective July 1.

Fr. Horn is the co-founder of the Institute for Priestly Formation (IPF) at Creighton University in Omaha and has more than 30 years of experience in Catholic education, spiritual direction, pastoral ministry and administration.

He has been serving as director of program development at the IPF, which has served more than 1,300 seminarians from 140 U.S. dioceses and 24 international dioceses since its founding in 1994.

Horn’s experiences have ranged from nursing home and parish ministry to high school teaching and field education for a suicide hotline.

Many years ago, he said, he felt the call to serve diocesan priests, one of Ignatius’s original works, in seminary formation. Ignatius “desired to serve diocesan priests because he knew if you affect one priest you affected an entire parish,” Horn said. “A great love of Christ compels me to want diocesan priests to have the best possible spiritual formation.”

Horn said Ignatian spirituality “helps us taste the presence of God at work in our hearts rather than have God be an idea and [just] talk about God. It invites us into the everyday experience of God’s presence in our lives. I can’t think of anything better to teach and form seminarians than this way of knowing God.”

For more about Horn, read the St. Louis Review article.

New rector-president for Kenrick-Glennon Seminary from St. Louis Review on Vimeo.

Jesuit on Becoming a Priest

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Jesuit Luke Hansen remembers how from a very early age he wanted to become a priest. Hansen says he realizes what a “unique calling” he has and that being a Jesuit is his deepest desire in life.

You can watch Hansen talk about becoming a priest in the video below and read his vocation story here. For more videos of Jesuits talking  about their vocational discernment, the challenges and blessings of religious life,  prayer, the vow of chastity, and other interesting topics, visit www.thinkjesuit.org.