This Tuesday we will have yet another seminarian from Pope St. John XXIII Seminary joining St. Bartholomew Parish for some pastoral work. Brannon Lepak is a seminarian for the Archdiocese of Oklahoma City, OK, and is beginning his second year of theological studies at the seminary. Unlike John, this past summer, and Father Lambert before him, because he is here during the academic year, he will be here only for a few hours during the week, so many of you may not get the opportunity to meet him. I want you to be aware of his presence, though, so that you might pray for him. You can learn more about him at the seminary’s website, www.psjs.edu.
In these days of challenge for the Church, please keep all the seminarians in your prayer, as well as those whom the Lord may be calling to the priesthood. In today’s climate, it can be difficult for someone who feels the Lord is calling him to be a priest to respond, and to respond joyfully. I recall my own admiration of the first class to be ordained after the scandal broke in 2002, as well as the first group to enter seminary after that. That truly showed conviction and a great deal of the virtues of faith and fortitude. Jesus has promised remain with his Church until the end of days, and it is in the sacramental ministry of the priest that this is concretized in a most special way.