|Date of Birth
||March 3, 1986
||Iowa State University
||Saint John Vianney
|Year in Seminary
||1st Year Theology
|Anticipated date of
||c/o SJV Theological Seminary
1300 South Steele Street
Denver CO 80210-2526
||Our Blessed Mother Mary
Thoughts on Priesthood:
The priesthood is a marvelous gift from God entrusted to a particular group of men who do not keep it for themselves, but who share it with the world. It is in their sharing of this gift that these men sacrifice their freedom, in a sense crucifying their own will and nature, and offer all that they have and are up with Christ as both victim and priest. In doing this they perpetuate the Word Incarnate and become themselves an Alter Christus.
As a humble instrument of God, the priest mediates for the people of God in both prayer and through the Sacraments, particularly through Holy Mass and Penance. The priest makes present to the world the love of Jesus Christ in a personal, human and tangible way. This sacrificial outpouring of love, I believe, best characterizes the priesthood as “greater love no man has than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends” (Jn 15:13). The priest, joining himself to the Church, ultimately leads souls to salvation and to God. There is no greater or exuberant love that I can imagine. As the saintly priest John Vianney once exclaimed, “Oh, how great is a priest! The priest will not understand the greatness of his office till he is in Heaven. If he understood it on earth, he would die, not of fear, but of love.”
Why I want to be a Priest:
I feel that God is calling me to this special, ordained service to his people. There are many in the world seeking truth, searching aimlessly and putting their trust in worldly pursuits which may provide temporary rewards but very little lasting fulfillment. As a result, there are many suffering souls in the world and I desire to bring these people to God and share with them my enthusiasm and joy that I have in my life as a baptized follower of Jesus Christ. I desire to share with them my love for the radiant bride of Christ, the Church. Finally, I desire to bring souls to him through the beautiful sacraments of his Church and lead them with me on a journey as pilgrims toward our divine homeland.
Hobbies and Interests:
Architecture, art, music, liturgy, theology, agriculture, literature, woodworking, antique "Farmall" tractors and classic automobiles, playing the piano and organ, singing in choir, ecclesiastical history, good conversation, and time spent with friends and family.
Tell us about your family as you grew up and when you started thinking about being a priest:
I grew up on a farm as the youngest child of seven in a household that emphasized its Catholicism as an integral part of everything that we did. Prayer and devotion were a daily part of life, whether it was attending Mass, a Holy Hour, or praying the Rosary. My parents raised us to recognize God as the highest priority and to acknowledge that it is He from whom all blessings flow, especially in the fruits we received in farming. In fifth grade, I began to serve at Holy Mass and at the same time felt inclinations towards the priesthood. Later, while studying architecture at Iowa State University, I began to seriously discern God’s call to the priesthood.
What inspires you about the priesthood?
The example of the many saintly priests who have gone before us in the history of the Church is a great inspiration to me. The radical availability of the priest to be with his people in times of joy, sorrow, difficulty, and triumph is the finest example of a priest’s life not being his own but rather given for the glory of God. The priesthood is a courageous venture in which one “puts aside childish things,” (1 Cor) becomes a man, and is “led where you do not want to go” (Jn 21), preaching the fullness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ unabashedly with conviction and love.
Who have been your heroes and what has been your influence?
My personal influences have been the movements of Jesus Christ and his Blessed Mother in my life as well as my parents, parish pastors, and friends who have played a large role in my faith formation and discernment.
The list of people I admire for their holiness, wisdom and example of life cannot be limited to one or two individuals. Among the people I esteem either for their writings or for their personal character would include Blessed John Paul II, Pope Benedict XVI, Archbishop Fulton Sheen, St. Faustina Kowalska, St. Thérèse of Lisieux, St. Gregory the Great, St. Cecilia, and St. Thomas Aquinas.