Sunday, November 8, 2009

Pardon the Commercial Interruption!

Taking a step back from my freshman story telling, I decided to add on the Chocolate Heart's Meme "Praise", by sharing my day!

Today started off with me singing with my church choir at 11 o'clock Mass and then going to watch the Packer game after. I am very sorry to report that they lost.:(
After a quick lunch, my family then headed off to Holy Hour at the Seminary. Holy Hour consists of the reciting of the Rosary, Divine Mercy Chaplet, Prayer for Vocations, and Adoration! It was simply beautiful!

After the Holy Hour, my mom then drove my friend Jerry, my brother Justin and myself to one of the greatest places I have ever been to, The Barn! My friends who were at the Seminary camp for those who are thinking of the priesthood the past two years with me, invited us to come to their house and their Barn! The Barn is a gigantic homemade play place right inside an actual barn! It has foam pits, trampolines, basketball hoops, dirt bikes( which I rode by the way), ATVS, mats and swinging ropes. On top of that, the Barn is built on a huge piece of land! It has to be almost 10 football fields long! That being said, of course we ended up playing a football game! After the game, my friends Deacon Matt Widder and Fr. Sean O'Connell came to have some fun too!

One of the most memorable parts of the night however was not all of the playing, but it was what we did after we played. After getting all nice and sweaty, Deacon Matt took all of us aside talked with us. The topic that we talked about was Celibacy. He talked to us about how we as priests will be called to be celibate. He told us that it was very hard for him when he was growing up, to tell people that he wanted to be a priest. When he told people about this desire, the common response was, " Well that means you won't be getting married." And that was very hard for him because at some points in his life he felted strongly about being a priest and about being celibate, and at others he felted weak about these thoughts. It hurt him to know that his friends would be married and have children and he wouldn't be able to do those things.

As Deacon Matt began to grow up though, he began to realize that celibacy is true sacrifice! You are giving up the chance to have a family! He realized that this sacrifice would be hard and it would hurt, but if sacrificing something does not hurt or is not hard, then it is not a true sacrifice at all! Look at Jesus on the Cross when he died for our sins. He was sacrificing His life for us, and it hurt Him so much! However He was strong enough to go through with the sacrifice.

Another thing Deacon Matt realized as he was growing up was that even though you can not get married, as a priest you are technically married to the Church and the congregation are your children. So in a sense, you do have a family and you are married!

This gave all of us a lot the think about. We have learned so much from my friend Deacon Matt. He has helped us throughout our discernment process. I am so grateful to him.

Please keep Deacon Matt in your prayers as he will be ordained a priest this May

This was one of the greatest days of my life, and I wouldn't change a minute of it.
Thank you for letting me share my day with you!



  1. John, I really enjoyed this post and found it helpful. My own priest told me that only when you are ordained a deacon/priest will you feel the strength and bond of love between you and your people. I know it is not the same as married love, but he says it really sustains him and we ought to know about it before ordination.

  2. Wow John! I'm so happy that you had that special day in The Barn...a place that would be HEAVEN ON EARTH for my husband and sons!!! I'm a little afraid to tell them about though you see...because...well....we HAVE a barn and I can just SEE those wheels already turning in their minds of how they could convert it to this great play place like the one on John's blog, ha ha ha ha!
    God bless you and your friends as you walk this journey of discernment...I heard a priest say once (regarding Celibacy) that it isn't a "cup half empty" with priests spending their lives thinking of the part that's "missing" or that they "gave up"...but is a cup so FILLED TO OVERFLOWING ALREADY...that there isn't ROOM for more.
    I liked that and thought you might too.

  3. Sounds like a great day! I will pray for Deacon Matt, I am writing his name down right now:)