When did you first feel called to religious life? Do you remember a specific place? A person?
As I was growing up, I have fond memories of being about religious sisters and priests from my parish. When I was in grammar school and serving as an altar server, the thought of being a priest entered into my mind, but it wasn’t until I was living in college and studying Automotive Engineering Technology to when I seriously discerned and explored this Vocation. It was additionally during my Novitiate year when I discovered the Brother Vocation and through prayer and discernment, the Lord has allowed me to journey as I continue to explore this way of life. In particular, there was a Brother who I met in my first few years of living with the Augustinians, that was a great influence for my journey with the community. Being able to learn from him not only about the Augustinians, but additionally my relationship with Christ has been very formative.
What's something fun / something you enjoy about living in community?
Something that initially captured my interest with the Augustinians was the common life that is shared with the Friars. Spending time together at mealtimes, not only sharing food, but engaging in conversation and telling stories about our lives has been a fruitful experience. I also enjoy the shared ministerial apostates of the local friary, living, working, and praying together has not only strengthened my ability to be a minister to others in the community in which I serve but additionally to come to a greater development of my Spiritual Life.
What is the best kept secret / most underrated aspect of the Tradition and Spirituality of Augustine?
During my formation, being introduced to not only the prayer of the Church through the celebration of Eucharist and the Liturgy of the Hours, but learning about the life and subsequent spirituality of St. Augustine has and continues to influence myself. Something that I personally appreciate is the applicability of the Augustinian Values to almost anything in society. As someone who works in Education apostolate, taking the thoughts of Augustine for how I teach and minister to students has been wonderful. Looking towards the restless heart and the continual journey of the Christian life provides me with fuel for the journey.
Do you have a hobby / passion that you enjoy spending time on?
In my spare time, I enjoy working with wood. I have been blessed to establish a small woodshop where I am currently assigned. Having the ability to take a break from work and studies and engage in building something and getting dirty not only allows me to express my physical skills and energy, but also has help me to further develop my spiritual life. Designing, planning, and building items additionally allows me to give back to the local community and express my creativity while keeping the technical part of my being active. I also like to be in the outdoors and helping with the Scouts. I am a member of the local Diocesan Catholic Committee on Scouting and even served as a volunteer scoutmaster over the summer for a 2-week backpacking trip in New Mexico. Scouting is something I was very involved in as a young person eventually earning the rank of Eagle Scout, being able to live my religious vocation and being involved in the program has been a tremendous blessing.