Saturday, August 23, 2014

Home for the First Time!

Twenty five new men arrived this afternoon, hailing from Rochester, NY, Weymouth, MA, Paris, France, Hanoi, Vietnam and all points in between!  Please keep our brothers and their families in your prayers as they prepare for the greatest adventure of their lives!  

Please pray for 

Matthew of the Diocese of Springfield
Gregory of the Diocese of Fall River
Linh of the Archdiocese of Hanoi
Michael of the Diocese of Springfield
Anh of the Diocese of Dalat
Thomas  of the Diocese of Springfield
Francisco of the Archdiocese of Hartford
David of the Diocese of Rochester
Camilo of the Diocese of Rochester
Joseph of the Archdiocese of Boston
Gregory of the Archdiocese of Boston
Joseph of the Archdiocese of Boston
Daniel  of the Diocese of Burlington
David of the Archdiocese of Hartford
John of the Archdiocese of Hartford
Denis of the Archdiocese of Boston
Hiep of the Diocese of Providence
Duc  of the Diocese of Dalat
Philip of the Diocese of Springfield
Nicholas of the Diocese of Providence
Andrew of the Diocese of Manchester
Sinh of the Diocese of Springfield
Philippe of the Archdiocese of Paris
Nathaniel of the Archdiocese of Boston

Here are some words of greeting I offered in the Chapel a few minutes ago:

Welcome!  God called.  You answered.  

How many different feelings must be running through your hearts right now.  Those of you who are about to become philosophers and theologians, discerning God’s call to a share in the Priesthood of Jesus, his Son must be scared half to death.  Wondering what he has in store for you, will you be up to the task? Will you be happy?

Be at peace, my brother.  For the same God who gave you birth, the same God who taught you to laugh, who is the way, the truth and the life...that God is all this place is about.  He is in the air we breathe and work we do.  He is the reason we rise and we rest.  He loves you more than you will ever know, and he has great things in store for you here!  Things more amazing than you have even dreamed. Like the little kid who has climbed the ladder to the great big slide, just take a deep breath and let go!  He’ll do the rest.

And be at peace, dear parents and friends.  My 86 year old mother has some advice for you.  Trust in God and he will do great things for your son.  He knows how much you love him and God will take good care of him here.  For God has called him and he has answered.  And that is very good.

I welcome you on behalf of an incredible faculty of wonderful priests, who once sat where you sit and once felt exactly as you feel today.  I welcome you on behalf of Cardinal O’Malley and our Board of Trustees.  I welcome you on behalf of our superb staff and our spiritual directors and pastoral supervisors.  I welcome you home.

So relax and enjoy.  You only have one first day of Major Seminary.  Mine was 38 years ago, when dinosaurs roamed the earth.  That day was, for me, the beginning of a life so filled with joy and beauty and truth that I cannot describe it without tears in my eyes.  And that is just what God has in store for you.

I’m the Rector, which means I’m your pastor.  I live on the second floor in an apartment a little smaller than the city of Providence and my office is at the end of that hallway.  My cell phone is in the student directory and you are my first priority in life.  I want nothing more than for God to do with you what he has in mind, and that, my brothers, is perfect joy.