Bishop Salvatore Matano, Bishop of Rochester, celebrated a Mass of candidacy for nine seminarians representing five dioceses on Sunday, May 1, 2022.
“Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you before you were born, I dedicated you, a prophet to the nations I appointed you" (Jeremiah 1: 5).
This is one of the passages in the Sacred Scripture that I heard when I was discerning my vocation to the priesthood, and it is still in my mind today. Since I started my formation toward the priesthood at Saint John's Seminary, I have seen God’s love and mercy throughout the process. My experience in these years of formation has been full of good experiences in different places that I have been.
On May 1, 2022, I stood before the Bishop Salvatore R. Matano and the Church to make public my desire to be a priest and serve the people of God. During the Rite of Admission to Candidacy, one of the questions that Bishop Matano asked us is “In Response to the Lord’s Call, are you resolved to complete your preparation so that in due time you will be ready to be ordained for the ministry of the Church?” With this question in mind, I want to express my gratitude to God and his mercy toward me because this is a big step that I have taken in my process of formation. I responded wholeheartedly, “Yes.” I want to complete my preparation toward priesthood and with the help of God be ordained a priest to serve in His Church.
At the end of the rite, the words the bishop said also caught my attention. He said, “Thank you for being here, thank you for answering God's call, these are difficult times, and the Church needs you". These words are going to be in my mind for the rest of my formation at Saint John’s Seminary. With God’s grace, I will be ready for the life of ministry which awaits me as a priest.
By: Mr. David Pineda
Archdiocese of Boston