Seminarians visit students in Jefferson Print
Written by Margie Schels, For the Catholic Herald   
Thursday, Nov. 05, 2015 -- 12:00 AM
Seminarians visit Jefferson
Diocese of Madison seminarians Vincent Racanelli and Phil Klaas (pictured in the back row) visit the eighth grade students at St. John the Baptist School in Jefferson. (Contributed photo)

JEFFERSON -- Seminarians Vincent Racanelli and Phil Klaas visited the eighth graders at St. John the Baptist School in Jefferson on October 16.

The students have "adopted" Racanelli as their prayer partner and "parish son" who has embarked on the road to the priesthood.

The students in Margie Schels' seventh and eighth grade classes have been praying for all seminarians, especially for Racanelli, since last year. He has visited the students several times to share about his vocational journey and his life as a student at Sacred Heart Major Seminary in Detroit.

Accompanying Racanelli on his most recent visit was fellow seminarian Phil Klaas, whose home parish is St. Albert the Great in Sun Prairie. He too attends Sacred Heart Major Seminary.

Sharing stories

Both he and Racanelli shared their stories with the eighth graders, telling them that their decisions to prepare for the priesthood came gradually as they experienced the life events that drew them closer to entering the seminary, responding to God’s call.

They spoke of the peace and joy that their decision has brought to their lives, even though the sacrifices they've made in making this choice to live the consecrated life may not be fully understood by others.

Message to the students

The clear message given to the students by the seminarians was to pray to God for guidance if their future paths are not clear to them, or if they struggle with any of life's challenges.

In sharing their happiness in being on the path to the priesthood, they impressed upon the eighth graders that they do enjoy many of life's "secular" activities: being with friends, playing sports, spending time with family, and just having fun . . . all of which enrich their faith journey and vice versa. The students appreciated hearing that!

The classroom visit concluded with the students and seminarians praying together the Prayer of St. Francis . . . "Lord, make me an instrument of your peace . . ."


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