Simon Zamani

2021-22: College Senior
St. John Vianney College Seminary, St. Paul, MN 

I cannot remember when the idea of becoming a Catholic priest first entered my head. It seems it has always been with me. Growing up in Nigeria, my Dad always supported my aspirations to become a priest, but unfortunately, he died when I was young. After he died, I stopped thinking about becoming priest for many years.

While studying in secondary school, I earned a scholarship to go to the United States for one academic year. I spent my junior year studying in Mt. Ayr, Iowa and received the sacrament of Confirmation while I was here. I also got to attend a Catholic youth conference in Des Moines where Bishop Pates was present. He spoke about people my age aspiring to become priests. I was able to speak with him and my dream of becoming a priest was revived.

I finished secondary school in Nigeria, but kept in touch with Bishop Pates and others I met while in the U.S. I am so happy to be attending St. John Vianney Seminary to continue my discernment of the priesthood. If tomorrow I never get to become a catholic priest, I still hope God gives me the opportunity to evangelize and preach salvation and do that for which he has called me.