Birth Date: April 22
Seminary: St. Francis de Sales Seminary
3257 South Lake Drive
St. Francis WI 53235-3702
Patron: St. Louis de Montfort
Are you a dog person or a cat person?
Cat person. The wild behavior of most dogs clashes with my personality. Friar Tuck, Fr. Quinn Mann’s dog, is alright though.
Tell us about a great experience you had during the summer of 2018.
The seminarians got together at Catholic Youth Expeditions at the beginning of the summer. During this time, I picked rocks with Michael Uchytil from of an area that was going to have grass planted. Fr. Quinn told us something close to, “Guys, don’t worry about getting all the rocks. Just worry about the big ones.” Spiritually fruitful were both the rock picking and the unintended spiritual message to primarily be concerned with important things. Of course, we did more than just pick rocks, but the labor, too, was a fruitful part of the visit.
Who influenced you the most to think about priesthood?
God Himself did. He gave me a love for the Mass at a young age. He gave me a love of His Church in high school when I began to have a feeling that many students only attended Mass and religious education because of a sense of obligation. He gave me the desire to grow in faith, knowledge, and prayer during college when many others just gave up. Before Green Bay’s priesthood ordination in 2016, God called me to pursue the vocation. I arrived early, and the choir, for an audience of one, practiced the responsorial, “You are a priest forever in the line of Melchizedek.” Of course, there were many others involved in this process. Chief among these were Fr. Len Evers for his quiet presence and steady example; Fr. Eric Nielsen for calling me to greater holiness in college; and Fr. Daniel Schuster for simply asking me if I wanted to actively discern priesthood.
Pope Francis recently wrote a document entitled Gaudete et Exsultate on holiness. What does holiness look like to you?
Although God creates for himself a variety of saints with many different talents and personalities, one unifying element is that holiness is something silent: a deep but almost invisible union with God. That does not mean that extroverts are unholy, but that holiness requires a level of inner quiet and peace. Without putting to rest our thoughts of worry, excessive planning, and other worldly things, we cannot aim our thoughts toward God. Holy people spend a great deal of time in quiet. They go to the silence, away from external noise and interior noise, for prayer. They quiet their rebellious, selfish wills to be open to God’s much better will. They quiet their passionate hearts to follow God’s law written upon it, and to reawaken their hearts with passion for Him. Religious vocations, when followed well, have always been icons of holiness in the Church. Jesus Himself also loved times of quiet. He often went up mountains and to other secluded places to pray, that is, to be in union with His (and our) Father. After He had given the disciples every gift other than His life, Jesus started his sacrifice of self for us in complete quiet, when He took upon himself our guilt, pains, and loneliness at the Garden of Gethsemane. Only with silence can we be ready for the small and great works God has in store for us.
What is your dream car?
I am tempted to say a white 2013 Hyundai Sonata because I am pleased with God’s gifts. However, a newer one would obviously be better, and I prefer black over white aesthetically. I have not looked much into other cars to decide whether I prefer something else.
What aspect of your home parish is the most meaningful for you?
What aspect of your home parish is the most meaningful for you? My favorite aspect of my home parish is the double deacons, Deacon Jim Lonick and Deacon Todd Raether (congratulations on your ordination this year), and the loving and self-giving priest, Fr. Tom Farrell. Thank you for your fidelity. I also truly appreciate the parishioners. Additionally, the patron, the Sacred Heart, is my favorite devotion.