What are some of the factors that led to your decision to enter the seminary and discern the question of a vocation to the priesthood
For me it was very clear that God was calling me to the priesthood; however, the difficulty was accepting the vocation. I recall how I stumbled upon a small book about vocations that Cardinal Sean wrote; it encouraged me to pursue this calling even if it was not my desire. I decided to discern God's call by going to Israel to work at the Domus Galilee. This decision was pivotal, because it was there that I was able to accept and recognize God's call. I was able to see that it was a gift rather than just a means to hinder me from fulfilling my plans and wishes.
Who are some of the people who influenced your decision to enter the seminary? What is it about them that assisted you?
While I was in Israel I frequently went to speak to a priest named Father Diego. He had to be the person that helped me the most in my decision to enter the seminary. Each time I spoke to him he urged me to examine the events of my life and to sincerely consider what it was that God desired for me. With his counsel I was able to see that God had been calling me to the priesthood since I was a young child and that I would be happier fulfilling the will of God rather than pursuing my own
What would you say is the role of prayer in the life of a seminarian and what effect does it have on one's ability to see God's call?
The role of prayer is to maintain an intimate relationship with God, always with the intention to align one's will with the will of the Lord. This is the key: in sincerely seeking that binding of wills, by God's grace one can be sure that he walks the right path.
What advice would you give to a man who thinking about his vocation and is considering that God may be calling him to be a priest?
Do not be afraid to entrust your life into God's hands. To accept God's call is to accept to embark on an adventure and to be a witness of miracles. Regardless of the trials, you will be more fulfilled doing the will of God than striving to achieve your own goals.
What do you like most about being a seminarian?
What I like is the dignity that seminary teaches you to live with. It impresses into you a rule of life that helps you value your time, and to include prayer in between daily tasks. Also, I enjoy the life we live as a community in which solid relationships are built between us seminarians, relationships that will aid us when our time comes to serve the Church as priests.
What do you think is the greatest challenge facing a man who is considering the seminary?
I think that the greatest challenging is trusting that you are not missing out on "what could have been". It is trusting that God has a better and greater plan for your life than your own. What the world has to offer is so enticing, but it is necessary to go beyond that and to seek the kingdom of Heaven.
What are some of your hobbies or pastimes? What are some of the things you like to do in your "free" time?
In my free-time I like to draw, to write or read. I do not mind a pick-up game of basketball every once in awhile. Also, I like to play guitar or just listen to some music
What do you think is the best way to encourage vocations to the priesthood in the Archdiocese of Boston?
I think the best way to encourage vocations is to recount the marvels that one has seen as a seminarian or a priest. Many people have an obscure understanding of the lives of priests, but if they recognize the adventuresome undertaking that is the call to the priesthood they just may be en-kindled with the willingness to pursue God's call.