One year ago today I discerned out of Kenrick-Glennon Seminary. The only people I told before I packed and left was my spiritual director and college rector because I couldn’t face my friends. I was supposed to meet my mom for lunch that day but instead called her and told her to meet me outside the restaurant. Mothers always know when something is up–I just cried as she came out and said, “You want to leave the Seminary, don’t you?” It was literally the most difficult decision I have ever made. And as I look back on this past year, so much has happened, and it’s hard to believe that it’s only been a year. While I still miss the close-knit community and my friends at the Seminary all the time, I have moved into another phase of my life at Truman State University, where I have made so many wonderful new friends, joined some great organizations, and taken up multiple leadership positions. I can truly say that I am happy. While I think about all of this, I couldn’t help but read all of the posts from my Seminary blog, deovolente.clickstl.com, and cry some more. My discernment has been difficult: entering Seminary, leaving Seminary, starting at Truman (which, by the way, was also my first time out of the private, Catholic education system), and all of the things in-between; but at the end of the day, my life is always in God’s hands, and I know that He knows best whatever it is that I need. Thanks for all of the prayers and support this past year! Love you, Mom & Dad, family. Love you, Truman. Love you, Seminary. Love you, friends. “I can do all things through Christ Who strengthens me.” God Bless!
First of all, yes, I realize that it has been five months since my last post. Since then, I finished the semester up at SLU and started at Truman State University. I just recently decided to start posting again. I will eventually switch everything to not be Seminary-oriented on this blog. Also, expect a post soon about how my time at Truman has been so far. Thanks for your support!
Today, on the Solemnity of St. Joseph, Pope Francis was officially inaugurated as the 266th Pontiff of the Holy Roman Catholic Church. In his homily, Pope Francis implored the faithful to “never forget that authentic power is service, and that the Pope too, when exercising power, must enter ever more fully into that service.” He said that today, amid so much darkness, we need to see the light of hope. “[Joseph] was chosen by the eternal Father as the trustworthy guardian and protector of his greatest treasures, namely, his divine Son and Mary. He carried out this vocation with complete fidelity until at last God called him, saying: ‘Good and faithful servant, enter into the joy of your Lord’” (St. Bernardine of Siena). Just as Joseph was a faithful father to Jesus, so too may Pope Francis be that faithful and loving Holy Father to us all. Happy feast day everyone!!!
Family, friends, blog followers and subscribers,
The following is the email [with few revisions] that I sent out to the Kenrick-Glennon Seminary community earlier this evening stating my departure from the Seminary:
“After much internal struggle, prayer, and spiritual direction, I have decided that I will not be returning to Kenrick-Glennon Seminary after fall break this weekend. I have loved my time here at Glennon, but I have discerned with the help of God that this is not the place for me to be right now in time. With divine providence, I know that I will continue my discernment in life.
Mimicking what another departing seminarian said, I believe that saying goodbye to people who have been so good to me is one of the most difficult things about leaving the Seminary. Leaving people and things that I care for has always been hard for me. I will continue to take classes at both SLU and the Seminary for the remainder of this semester, so I should get time to say goodbye to each of you individually.
One of the greatest gifts I have received is a deeper understanding of who I am, who God is, and what our relationship is to one another. I have grown so much this past year and a quarter that it is impossible to put into words. I express my immense thanks to all of my formators, teachers, and especially my classmates—you all have affected my life at a level I knew not possible for a 19-year old college student.
Though I will not reside at the Seminary any longer, I will be around for classes, so I hope to see everyone around still. Also, while I assume I will keep this email ‘til semester’s end, my home email address is firstname.lastname@example.org. As I continue to pray for you all during your time of discernment, please keep me in your prayers as I enter a different phase in my life.
In Pax Christi,
So, it is time to say vale, which is Latin for “goodbye.”
I may or may not continue to periodically post thoughts about my continued discernment.