Deacon Brad Robey
2020-21: Theology IV
St. Paul Seminary, St. Paul, MN
All vocation stories have their beginnings, and the beginning to my vocation story began in the younger years of my life. I drew quite a bit, and one thing I can remember drawing was myself being a priest at the Mass. The idea of being a priest came naturally to me, and attending mass at St. Joseph, I had a warm feeling being inside the church building.
As time went on, the idea of priesthood stuck to me. Some of my classmates at St. Joseph School even told me they could see me being a priest. However, my lacking faith life in middle school caused my calling to the priesthood to be pushed into the back of my mind. "It's not for me" I told myself. This continued on into the first year and a half of high school.
At Dowling Catholic, there is a men's prayer group known as the Legion of Our Lady (devoted to Mother Mary, of course) which has weekly meetings, and a close friend of mine invited me to a meeting in January of my sophomore year. Shortly after, I became a member of the legion. During this time, I also got to know the vocations director for the diocese through periodical meetings. All these things helped me grow closer to Christ, and to become more welcoming the calling to priesthood.
From second semester of sophomore year on, I began to visit the different seminaries. My first visit to the St. John Vianney seminary at the University of St. Thomas was when I finally said "yes" to my calling. Throughout my junior and senior year of high school, I continued growing in my faith; however, my academics were weak, which prevented me from getting accepted to the University of St Thomas. Determined, I went to Des Moines Area Community College to boost my academic performance to finally get into SJV.
Despite the fact that I decided to go to SJV, I went on a seminary visit to Conception in November of 2013. After a weekend at the beautiful Conception Abbey and getting to know the seminarians there, I changed my mind. I visited Conception again in the spring of 2014, which finalized my choice of going there.
I've learned quite a bit about myself and my relationship with God during these past few years. It'll be something to see what happens in the upcoming years.