Spring is the season of celebration — days to honor our mothers and fathers, graduations, First Communions, and, of course, ordinations, which hold special importance to us at the seminary.
For us as Catholics, it is the Eucharist which lies at the heart of every celebration! The Mass is the place, above all others, where we encounter the Lord most intimately in the Sacrament of the Eucharist. As St. John Paul II reminds us, “If the Eucharist is the center and summit of the Church’s life, it is likewise the center and summit of priestly ministry” (Ecclesia de Eucharistia 31). It is for this reason that the Eucharist plays a central role in the life of the seminary and of our priest alumni.
It is not uncommon when reading seminary applications to find that a young man first seriously considers a priestly vocation in the context of the Eucharist. It could be a profound experience of grace during Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament on a youth retreat or conference, or perhaps it is the fruit of a longer, growing hunger for more as he develops the habit of going to daily Mass.
This spring, we are thrilled to celebrate with five men who have responded generously to this invitation of the Lord and have been or will soon be ordained to the priesthood. You can learn more about their stories, including the special significance of the “tools” they have selected to offer Mass, their chalices.
We are also proud that an alumnus and current board member of our seminary, the Most Reverend Andrew Cozzens, bishop of the
Diocese of Crookston, is leading the National Eucharistic Revival The Church in the United States is currently preparing for next summer’s National Eucharistic Congress.
Here in this archdiocese, an historic seminary monstrance brought from France in 1865 is making the rounds to various parishes and events. What makes this even more special is that this same monstrance was also used at the last National Eucharistic Congress in 1941, which was held right here in the Twin Cities! What a grace to see this sacred vessel being used to foster devotion to the Eucharist through Adoration and public processions. One of those processions is our own “Borromeo Weekend,” which we celebrate with Saint John Vianney College Seminary every November.
This spring, make the Eucharist the heart of your celebrations. Of course, this is only possible through the gift of the priesthood, which is the heart of our mission. We are grateful for your support and encouragement so that we can provide the Church with priests she needs today.
Sincerely yours in Christ,
Reverend Joseph C. Taphorn, JCL
Rector and Vice President