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Home News and Events Ecclesia Archives: 2006(non-PDF)
Meet our new Seminarians 2007 PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 08 February 2007 13:13
In addition to Seminarians Phil Kupferschmidt and John Scott, there are three other new Seminarians.

Richard Pilon

I am the youngest child in a family of seven. I was born and raised on the family farm in Vinton, Quebec, and attended Mass at St. Elizabeth's parish. Part of my growing up involved serving Mass on Sundays, I enjoyed it because I felt I had a knack for it and was inspired by our pastor at the time. From about the age of three to the age of twelve, I wanted to do just about every profession I had encountered - farmer, school bus driver, teacher, and priest. Priesthood always ranked fairly high until later on when my interests steered me away from my faith. Once I graduated high school, beginning my studies in Computer Science was a natural choice at the time for someone who wanted to make a vast amount of money.

Halfway through college, I found myself questioning whether there might be something more than the usual make money/spend money approach to life. I had a sneaking suspicion that this "more" might be God, but I was so far on the other end of the "spiritual" spectrum that any relationship with Him seemed impossible.

Though I felt he was far from me, really I resisted him. Finally, one day he broke through my thick skin when I read the following words from Scripture, "Seek first the Kingdom of God and his righteousness and all else will be given to you besides" (Matt. 6). These words had a deep impact on me, and since then my life has never been the same. I relate well to the words written by St. Augustine so many, many years ago; "You called, you shouted and you broke through my deafness. You flashed, you shone and you dispelled my blindness."

One of the paths that I have been led on is the pursuit of the priesthood - first with a bright and new religious community, the Companions of the Cross in Ottawa, who nurtured and fostered my new found relationship with God and now, here, with my home Diocese of Pembroke. The journey continues as I discern with my superiors and the Church, the various aspects of this vocation such as priestly ministry and celibacy in London, Ontario, at St. Peter's Seminary. I am also encouraged by the inspiring examples of all the priests I have come to know and I am very grateful for the support of wonderful family and friends.

Nick Brown

I look back and can't help but ask myself how I ended up here, at St. Peter's Seminary in London, Ontario? I have just completed my first semester of philosophical studies while in the priestly formation program and can reflect a little. I have been drawn to the idea of the priesthood from a young age. I grew up in Pembroke and am the oldest of three brothers in my family. My years of elementary school were spent at Our Lady of Lourdes and from there I went on to graduate from Bishop Smith Catholic High School last summer. Throughout these years in school, the idea of the priesthood has always been at the back of my mind, particularly as I mulled over 'what I want to be when I grow up'.

As I grew up, I became more involved in the parish life at Our Lady of Lourdes, and the possibility that God could be calling me to the priesthood became clearer. As the thought of pursuing my vocation became the reality it is now, I see the many people that God has worked through to echo the invitation of Christ: Come, follow me.
I am thankful for the great support and encouragement from my family and friends, as I have begun to seriously discern my vocation. Also, I am grateful to God for the many outstanding priests that the Diocese of Pembroke is blessed with, and for their example, encouragement, prayers and support. I trust that the Holy Spirit who has led me here will continue to guide me as I discern God's call with an open mind and heart.

Mike Goring

Over the last four months or so, my life has changed significantly. Up until August 2006, I had been working at Nortel in Ottawa, where I had been employed for the last six years. I am 32 years old and grew up in Pembroke.

My parents Rudi and Doris are both retired teachers, and live in Pembroke. We are a family of four boys, of which I am the oldest. Mark is one year younger than me. He is a priest with the Companions of the Cross, and he lives in Ottawa.

Peter is a software designer at Entrust in Ottawa. Andrew is studying architecture at Algonquin College, Ottawa campus. Up until beginning my studies at St. Peter's Seminary this September,
I shared a house with Peter and Andrew. I am a member of the Cathedral Parish in Pembroke. Growing up in Pembroke, I went to St. Jean Baptiste school and church. I studied at Bishop Smith Catholic High School and have a computer engineering degree from Carleton University.

The change in my life came about when I decided to discern God's will for my life by doing a one week Ignatian silent retreat in May this year. I felt attracted to the priesthood over the past year or so and wanted to take time to pray about what direction I should go in. Going into the retreat I was not sure if I would get a clear indication of God's will. I figured that some extended time of prayer would be helpful. To my surprise, I came away from the retreat with a strong sense that God wanted me to pursue studies for the priesthood. I met with Bishop Smith to tell him I was interested to study for the priesthood. After meeting with our vocations directors Fr. Kenney and Msgr. Bridge, I completed the application process and was accepted to begin studies at St. Peter's Seminary in London, Ontario.

Seminary life for the first few months was a stretch for me. After about ten years away from studies, it was also daunting to become a student again. Looking back on the first semester of studies it has gone very well. My studies are in theology, which I am really enjoying. Seminary life has allowed me to spend more time in prayer and learn about and grow in my Catholic faith, while discerning a call to the priesthood.

The success of my studies so far is due in large part to the prayers of many individuals. Thank you for your prayers.

Please continue to pray for the Pembroke seminarians and the youth of our diocese, that they may respond generously to God's will for them.
 

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Home News and Events Ecclesia Archives: 2006(non-PDF)