I am grateful to be assigned to Bigfork, Squaw Lake, and Northome. I look forward to seeing what God has in store for all of us, witnessing His guiding provident hand in our daily lives. Perhaps Fr. Thomas has mentioned a few things about me, but for the record here are some quick facts: I have always lived in Minnesota. I grew up on a rabbit farm with usually around 300 rabbits in the small town of Norwood. That ended when we moved to my dad’s hometown of Brainerd just before I entered 5th grade. I love the outdoors, photography, hiking and occasionally kayaking. In high school I played football, basketball, ran track for 2 years, and tennis for the previous 2 years. In college I studied geology and ran cross country and track. I worked after college in the environmental department of an engineering firm and aspired to become a hydrogeologist. As God would have it His way, I entered seminary instead. I was ordained a priest on June 9th, 2017.
I first served at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Rosary and St. Mary’s Star of the Sea in Duluth. I am grateful for this time as God helped me to learn what it means to be a priest and spiritual father. I enjoyed working with the newly formed Stella Maris Academy, teaching religion in 11 classes once a week my first year and the second year adding 7 more classes once every 2 weeks for a total of 18 classes. This was a truly graced time. God did many wonderful and unbelievable things there. During that time Bishop Sirba asked me, “What do you love most about being a priest?” I answered something like, “That God has given me the opportunity to radiate His love. I rejoice that I get to see Him act in the lives of others especially the children at Stella Maris. For me it is like going to heaven, there are days where I feel as though I am swimming in His grace. In heaven is God and those who love God. I pray that I am able to lead them all to heaven.” And there were many other lessons God taught me there that I hope to share with you in time.
For the last year and a half, I served in Hibbing. Once again, rejoicing to teach in the Assumption Catholic School. During that time the pastor, Fr. Gabriel, went on sabbatical and found himself unable to return for 3 extra months due to flight restrictions during the pandemic, leaving me to be the main priest for 7 months. I had the help of Fr. Samson Kigorwe Mrinkanya, who you may know.
I look forward to getting to know you and serving you as your priest.
May God richly bless you!