The annual Welcome Weekend at Mount St. Mary’s Seminary of the West is happening on April 13-14, 2018 and all men college age and older are encouraged to come. This is a great opportunity for you to explore further the pull toward the priesthood you feel in your heart and to meet, pray and socialize with men who have responded to that same pull in their own hearts.
The weekend begins at 4:30 on Friday evening and ends at 6:00 on Saturday evening. If you are coming in from a great distance, and you will need to stay and celebrate Sunday Mass with the Men of the Mount that can be arranged as well.
If you have sought out the whisper of the Lord in silent prayer and you have heard Him speak your name, you do not want to miss this event as it happens only once a year. For more information and to register, please click here or click on the image above to view the flyer.
One of the greatest obstacles to a man responding to his call to the priesthood is his sense of unworthiness. Many men believe that they have to be the perfect Catholic and have mastery over their sinful nature. The truth is, however, that the Lord calls each of us as we are and he wants to use us in ways we cannot even fathom at the moment of our call. He provides the grace, all we must do is offer Him our lives!
With that in mind, Br. Edgar Henrique Carrasco, LC provides us with 7 characteristics of men who are called to be a Catholic priest. You might be surprised just how common these characteristics are:
- He is still a sinner, like everybody else
- He doesn’t abandon his life or his family; he purifies them
- He is still attracted to women
- He doesn’t give up fatherhood
- He is unworthy of his mission
- He still makes mistakes
- He is fully happy.
Read the entire article and pray that the Lord reveal himself to you as you discern your true calling.
Fr. Kyle Schnippel, the former vocation director here at the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, has been working hard as a pastor of a region of three parishes in the Northwest corner of the I-275 loop. So hard, in fact, he realized rather quickly into his assignment that if he didn’t have an outlet to get his mind off his work, he would run himself ragged trying to keep up. So, from his love of brewing his own craft beers, Fr. Kyle’s scientific mind switched gears to the warmth of the oven and the fun of kneading dough.
Father began baking about 6 months into his parish assignment and quickly determined to try the next new recipe he could find. He joined in a King Arthur Flour baking challenge and showed off his successes on his Instagram account.
Quickly he built up quite a local following. One of those followers caught wind that the Great American Baking Show was holding auditions for their next season and strongly encouraged Father to tryout. With a couple of his favorite recipes, Father traveled to Georgia and then to the Northeast where he made it through the auditioning process and was ultimately offered one of 1o spots in “the Tent” in jolly old England.
On December 7th, his journey culminated in
a watch party at one of his parishes (click the link to view pictures and a great write up of the event), St. John Neumann, where he and more than 100 of his parishioners and friends gathered to watch the premier episode of the Great American Baking Show and what a great experience it was. While the result was not what anybody in the room had hoped (Fr. Kyle was kicked off at the end of the second episode), the joyful witness of a priest using his talents outside of the church was one that hopefully will continue to shed light on a vocation far too often seen only at the altar.
With that in mind, at the end of the viewing party, Fr. Kyle announced that another popular priest who’s great in the kitchen, Fr. Leo Patilinghug has agreed to come to St. John Neumann parish for a bake off between the two priests as the parish celebrates its patronal feast on January 20, 2018. More details will be coming from the parish in the coming weeks, but if you can’t wait try some more of Fr. Kyle’s wonderful baked goods, his parish region will be hosting watch parties for the next two weeks of the Great American Baking Show as well. This Thursday from 8-11pm the party will be in Francis Hall at Corpus Christi, 2014 Springdale Rd., Cincinnati, OH and next week’s watch party will be hosted on December 21 from 8-11 at St. John Neumann’s Daniel Hall, 12191 Mill Rd., Cincinnati, OH.
If you missed the first two episodes, you can still view them at abc.go.
Last week was National Vocation Awareness Week and it was full of great opportunities to pray together and to learn more about discerning the vocation to which God has called each of us. And the excitement of that week was peaked by the huge news coming out of our local seminary.
With more and more men responding to the call being placed on their hearts through the grace effected by our continued prayers, Mount St. Mary’s Seminary of the West has run out of room and, with the future looking bright, it was time to expand and make room for 30 more men to study at this historic facility! Here is the coverage of the ground breaking ceremony which happened on November 2nd:
This news of an expanding seminary can be quite a shock to those who are still living with the negative view of the priesthood that has been around for almost 20 years here in the United States and one news station took the time to look much deeper and find the source of this rise in vocations is actually coming from the least likeliest of places – millenials:
In addition to that great news and wonderful news coverage, more than 75 communities from across the state of Ohio prayed together during the Statewide Day of Adoration for Vocations on Wednesday. Religious communities, parishes and even Catholic High Schools joined together to beg the harvest master to send more laborers into the harvest. It was a beautiful experience for many:
We had a beautiful holy hour! We had over 15 people in our small convent. – Sr. Ana, OSC from the Sisters of St. Clare Poor Clares
We had a wonderful experience at St. Augustine in Minster. Parishioners commented how much they enjoyed a dedicated hour focused on praying for vocations… – Barb from St. Augustine, Minster, OH
I had some good time to think about and pray for many of the priests and nuns who’ve been a part of my life, some whom I
haven’t thought about in years, and at least one person (the priest who baptized me) that I’ve never met. I also prayed in a special way for my kids and their vocations, some of which have already been discerned, and some which are still in the process. – Joe from Ascension, Kettering, OH
And finally, the Serra Club of Cincinnati was able to complete their 9 day Bible Reading Novena during which they dedicated nearly 12 hours a day in adoration of the Blessed Sacrament and recitation of the scriptures for an increase of vocations to the priesthood and religious life.
These dedicated prayers across the state of Ohio are truly having a great impact on our local church and priestly and religious vocations are seeing a great time of flourishing. May we all continue to pray for our men and women in formation and for each other that we may have the courage to seek God’s will in our lives.
We are excited to announce the latest video for our Buckeye Vocations YouTube channel. This time we were able to sit down with Deacon Jarred Kohn who was ordained to the Transitional Diaconate on April 29, 2017 and is about to enter his final year of seminary formation before being ordained a priest. In this first video he talks about his discernment journey and gives us some great advice on how to deal with doubt in discernment. Enjoy!
For those who would rather not watch the video, the full transcript is below.
Full Video Transcript:
Where do you call home?
My home parish is St. Mary in Philothea, which is up in the Coldwater Cluster which is in Mercer County or “God’s country” as we like to call it back home.
How long have you been in the seminary?
Well, I think it would be 7 or 8 years depending on how you count. I started in 2009, which would be 8 years, but I did take a year off after my freshman year, just [sic] discernment can be tricky.
So, why did you decide to leave?
I didn’t actually decide after my freshman year that, “Okay, this isn’t for me; I need to take a year off,” or whatever. My intention was, at the end of that year, to come back. But I was working somewhere and I had to be there at 4:45 in the morning which meant that, I never really got to daily Mass, that often. But it was also at 4:45 in the morning so I wasn’t dedicated enough to do Liturgy of the Hours and pray the Office of Readings or morning prayer that I now promise to do everyday but at the time it wasn’t necessarily a requirement. So, my spiritual life, kind of, you know, wasn’t as important at that time. And as a result of that I think I began to waver. Also, kind of, entering seminary I never intended to go to college after high school, so it was a difficult year to adjust to academic life, to life in the city; all these different factors (being away from my family), all kind of hit me the summer coming back.
So what happened next?
I called the vocation director at the time and he said, “Take a year. Do what you need to do.” So, I called the rector at Brute College Seminary and he was also very supportive. So I began working and my summer job eventually transferred into going back to a welding career which meant working third shift. That was actually pretty nice for the spiritual life in a way because I could get home early in the morning, go to morning Mass, do my morning prayer and office of readings, then go to bed. Then I’d wake up, and was able to do evening prayer, night prayer and all that stuff, so it kind of got me back into a rhythm. Once that started happening, then all of a sudden God began speaking again like, “Hey, what about seminary?”
What other ways did you develop your prayer life?
As I mentioned, going to Mass more frequently. I was pretty much going everyday but, you know, that isn’t necessary and perhaps isn’t even practical for everybody, but going as often as you can, even during the week. But then also, frequent confession was also a big thing. It helps us to clear out the obstacles that are keeping us from the Lord and helps us also to examine what is going on in our heart and kind of flood out what is our self-will and what is our sinful nature and sort out what is that part of us that is naturally attracted to God. Then there is private prayer. I feel blessed in growing up in a country parish because still to this day, we have 24 hours a day that the church is open so to spend that private time with the Lord in the blessed sacrament has always been a source of, you know, has always been the most important part of my spiritual life; the opportunity to spend that time with Lord has always been that key.
How do you deal with doubt in discernment?
You know I think it’s an important aspect of taking on the diaconate and priesthood but it’s also an element that can make guys waver, it’s that realization that, “I’m not worthy of this.” Which is true! But it’s also not yours to take on. It’s really Christ who is really taking you into his life and his own ministry. It is not something you can simply posses by your own merit. I’m never going to be a good priest because I’m Jarred; I’m going to be a good priest because I’ve allowed Christ to take ownership of my heart and I’ve taken ownership of his and so we have that mutual relationship. So without some recognition that I’m a flawed human being and in some ways I’m also a goofy and quirky guy but somehow Jesus is still calling me to this and calls other guys who are all different and he wants to speak through each one of our personalities to the people of God and wants to, you know, draw the entire world to himself. It’s just crazy. It’s awesome!
On Saturday, May 21, 2017, the Archdiocese celebrated the ordination to the priesthood of three men: Fr. David Doseck, Fr. Peter Langenkamp, and Fr. Alexander Witt. Please join us in continuing to pray for these men as they begin their priesthood! Also, please take some time to relive the exciting day by viewing the photo gallery below!
This past Saturday was another great day for the Archdiocese of Cincinnati as 4 young men- Craig Best, Jarred Kohn, Andrew Smith and Jacob Willig- were ordained transitional deacons by Bishop Joseph Binzer at the Cathedral of St. Peter in Chains. It was a beautifully celebrated ceremony with a palpable sense of joy emanating from the newly ordained men, Bishop Binzer, the concelebrating priests, the numerous permanent deacons who came to celebrate and the entire assembly! To relive this wonderful day or to check out a few of the highlights that you missed, go to our newest photo gallery below! Please continue to pray for these men as they now enter their last year of formation toward priesthood.
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