Away from their desks and
into the real world
By DAVE MYERS
Southwest Kansas Catholic
Not that the seminary isn’t the real world, but being challenged by someone in need of guidance, help and hope is a bit different than being challenged by your theology professor.
The five seminarians for the Catholic Diocese of Dodge City recently completed another year of seminary studies and are back home in Southwest Kansas serving in various capacities.
They are: John Stang, Austin Habash, and Tyler Saucedo — each of whom attend St. John Vianney Theological Seminary in Denver — and Eric Frieb and Esteban Hernandez, who attend Conception Seminary in Conception, Mo.
Stang will spend his summer serving on the Prayer & Action team.
Made up of young adults, the Prayer & Action teams go out into the peripheries each summer and work in two locations painting, landscaping, and otherwise lending aid to families in need.
Last year, while one group painted a home, another group a few blocks away found themselves helping a family to move. The family had recently lost their daughter, so the presence of the young adults — working, joking, playing with some of the families’ young children — were a welcome sight for the troubled family.
Habash will serve on the Totus Tuus team, which leads week-long retreat-like experiences for youth and children in the parish. The afternoon and evening classes (depending on age) include faith-filled lessons and a good dose of games and laughter.
When the Catholic covered a Totus Tuus gathering a few years ago, then-seminarian Jacob Schneider was having at least as much fun as the youngsters.
Saucedo will be spending much of his summer on a 30-day Spirituality Year retreat, then will be in residence at the Cathedral of Our Lady of Guadalupe rectory, where he’ll continue to learn from the examples of Father Wesley Schawe, Father Aneesh Parappanattu, MSFS, and others in the parish.
Frieb, meanwhile, will continue with his ministerial work while living at home in Olmitz, serving his parish of St. Ann, and helping out in other capacities.
Hernandez has been assigned to serve St. John the Baptist Parish in Spearville, while continuing with his English studies. He will learn from Father John Forkuoh, pastor, and will benefit from the presence of Father Jack Maes, who is retired and living in Spearville.
The communities in which the seminarians will reside this summer are asked to be supportive of these young men, perhaps by inviting them into your home for a meal, or allowing them to help with a project.
You can continue to send letters of support to the seminarians this summer via the Catholic Chancery. Send letters to (name of seminarian), 910 Central, P.O. Box 137, Dodge City, KS 67801.