Diocese of lansing seminarians

Diocese of lansing seminarians DEFAULT

Jane Sessions welcomes visitors into the Department of Formation’s Office of Seminarians with a warm, wide smile and sparkling eyes. Strangers or friends, secular or religious, Jane offers hospitality, assistance or a listening ear to each person.

For 20 years, Jane has helped men navigate the discernment process. From the moment of first contact to ordination, Jane is the voice, hands and heart helping with paperwork and deadlines. Administration assistance isn’t all she offers seminarians, though. Jane also shares her faith, nurtured from childhood. Her simple but profound belief that God guides her through trials and celebrates her joyful moments is inspiring, and her joy in Christ fills her words and actions.

“At a really young age I fell in love with Jesus,” Jane says.

Her spirituality began to develop when Jane would escape the cacophony of her large family by retreating to her room and reading the white, zippered Bible her parents had given her for Easter.

“Being the middle child, I didn’t like a lot of chaos,” Jane says with a smile.

Those quiet reflective moments were balanced with many activities in the neighborhood Methodist church she attended with her siblings. It was a special place for Jane, filled with activities around which she centered her childhood and young adult life. Her introduction to Catholicism came from neighborhood friendship with three large Catholic families. Jane remembers games of kick the can or hide-and-go-seek ending at one family’s home where she would be invited to share in their evening ritual of praying the rosary.

“Being that I already loved Jesus, I thought honoring his mother was really awesome,” she says. “And then I got the opportunity to go to Mass several times.”

During the Mass, Jane marveled at the presence of Christ she witnessed on the crucifix and in the Eucharist. Jane’s exposure to Catholicism intensified when she began dating her husband, David, in high school. He would pick her up from teaching Sunday school at the Methodist church and they would attend Mass together. After high school and David’s return from a tour of duty with the Air Force in Vietnam, they became engaged. Jane found her growing love for her fiancé was mirrored in her growing love of Catholicism. Before Jane and David married, she went through the RCIA program and came into the Church.

“I love the rituals of the Catholic Church,” Jane says. “I love the traditions.”

Married life added new faith experiences, both as a stay-at-home mother to three daughters and through her participation in different activities at St. Gerard Parish in Lansing. Shared activities with David included teaching religious education classes, working in the marriage preparation program and participating as a team couple with World Wide Marriage Encounter.

“The Catholic Church, family life and the vocation of marriage are deeply rooted values to both of us,” Jane explains.

These faith experiences and David’s unexpected job loss led Jane to apply for a secretarial position 20 years ago in the formation office of the Diocese of Lansing. After being hired, Jane remembers asking Father Mark Inglot, who was seminarian director at the time, why he wanted her for the position. Father Mark said that he could train someone with business skills to do administrative work, but her faith, attitude and natural smile were gifts that couldn’t be taught. She believes her faith and skills have increased from her experiences working for five different directors. “Each priest helped deepen my faith and sharpen my skills in unique ways” Jane says.

She sees her position as a ministry that, along with her faith, and her family, she feels deeply blessed by and gives thanks for every day.

“I’m very proud of our diocese for all that they do to assist our seminarians during their discernment. It’s not about numbers, it’s about good priests and the Diocese of Lansing is very blessed” Jane says.

From first contact, Jane is there to guide each man through each step of the application process for the diocese and the seminary. She created checklists and timetables to make life easier for the applicants to keep deadlines from being forgotten. Jane coordinates financial sponsorships for each seminarian from more than 40 Knights of Columbus councils in the diocese, which provide support for their personal needs such as books and supplies. Along with other duties under the department chairperson, she administrates the Joseph Albers Trust Fund, which was set up by Bishop Albers to help with tuition grants for college seminarians – expenses not covered in contributions made to the Diocesan Service Appeal for theology seminarians.

“Jane really is, in many ways, the connection of these young men with the diocese, especially during the application process,” says Father John Linden, director of the Office of Seminarians.

Father John credits Jane’s joy-filled and open personality as providing comfort and security to young men feeling vulnerable about their new direction in life.

“It is very important to have that warm person as you walk in the door,” he says.

When Father John introduces each new seminarian to Jane, he explains that Jane will be the man’s third mother, right behind the Blessed Mother and the seminarian’s mother.

“The least we can do is give them someone they can find comfort with,” Father John says.

Jane is the friendly voice on the other end of the phone for the seminarians who even study in Rome. She communicates regularly with families of seminarians and creates a community for all the families together through special events.

“It is a privilege for me to witness up front as each of these men grow in their journey to the priesthood, and celebrating their success at ordination. I get pretty sentimental at an ordination as I reflect back on the first time I connected and worked with him as a candidate through the application process,” she admits.

Jane’s relationship with seminarians does not stop after ordination. She often receives visits and phone calls from her former seminarians, and sometimes one becomes her boss, like Father John.

“She’s authentically Jane, and the same person I met 13 years ago,” Father John says warmly. “There was Jane to welcome me both times in my insecurity and help me feel secure,” he says of her powerful and soothing presence when he started in the seminary and years later as he became the department chair and the director of seminarians. He appreciates Jane’s faith and experience, as well as her support of him the past two years. “It makes my work more joyful,” says Father John.

“It’s all about answering God’s call in your life and giving it your all; God’s grace will do the rest,” Jane says. This simple yet profound belief has kept Jane close to God all her life and helped her to support and inspire a generation of seminarians and priests.

Sours: https://faithmag.com/diocese-lansing-seminarians-jane-second-mom

Seminarian Education

We’ve got some great news to share!

This fall is likely to see the largest group of major seminarians in our diocese for more than a decade. Our prayers, your prayers, for new priestly vocations seem to be bearing fruit. Thanks be to God! Unfortunately, given the impact of the pandemic on our parish and diocesan finances, it comes along at a very difficult time financially.

These young men need our help, and now! Our diocesan costs to pay for seminarian education this year will increase by several hundred thousand dollars.

These young men need your help! Will you please make a charitable financial contribution to support Seminarian Education this year? Your gift to Seminarian Education will be used to provide for the costs of educating seminarians of the Diocese of Lansing in the current or coming academic year. The funds will be used for traditional costs of an undergraduate or a graduate degree – tuition, room & board, required fees, etc. Your gift will help bring a whole generation of priests to our parishes and our people – thank you!

Sours: https://www.dioceseoflansing.org/vocations/seminarian-education
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Tonight at 8pm, you are invited to take part in a webinar with Dr. Dan Keating of Sacred Heart Major Seminary on how to get the most from reading 2 Samuel which is the current book being read as part of Bishop Boyea&#;s Year of the Bible. All are very welcome. The Zoom link for the webinar is here:

Dr. Dan Keating is Professor of Theology at Sacred Heart Major Seminary where he teaches on the Church Fathers, Ecumenism, and the New Evangelization.

Dr. Keating is a graduate of University of Michigan; Sacred Heart Major Seminary; and Oxford University. He received his doctorate in theology from Oxford University.

He is the author of The Appropriation of Divine Life in Cyril of Alexandria (), Deification and Grace (), First and Second Peter, Jude (), and co-author of James, John (), co-author of Athanasius and His Legacy (), and The Adventure of Discipleship (). He is a Catholic participant in the annual meeting of the national Catholic-Evangelical dialogue. Full Zoom details here:

Topic: BYOB Webinar w/ Dr. Dan Keating
Time: Sep 30, PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)

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See MoreSours: https://www.facebook.com/pages/category/Religious-Organization/dioceseoflansing/posts/

You are a Witness to Hope

Pope Francis has called us to be bold, to be missionaries and to be witnesses to Christ and His saving message. He has called each of us to “constantly be ready to bring the love of Jesus to others, and this can happen unexpectedly and in any place: on the street, in a city square, during work, or on a journey.” That is what it means to be a witness and to live our mission. This is our call to give of ourselves, to offer our lives as a willing sacrifice in order to receive the very life of Christ, and to fulfill His mission by His Grace and strength to work in us.

Our financial generosity is one expression of how we can witness to the hope of His message and build His kingdom here on earth. It is not something that we should do grudgingly or as a token response. Witness to Hope is an invitation to be an active missionary and evangelist for Christ Jesus. Together in union with tens of thousands of your sisters and brothers, you are called to be a Witness to Hope throughout the Diocese of Lansing.

The People of God: A Community of Gifted Believers

The Catholic Diocese of Lansing is made up of nearly , people who have many gifts and talents and experiences to share. What is possible if we unwrapped all those gifts? What could we achieve together that no individual person or parish could accomplish alone? All in praise and glory of Him!

The Catholic Diocese of Lansing is moving forward on a historic journey to raise $65 million in its first-ever comprehensive diocesan-wide campaign titled Witness to Hope. Based on the vision of Bishop Boyea’s pastoral letter Go Announce the Gospel of Jesus Christ, this campaign will advance the ability of our parishes, as well as our diocese, to fulfill the shared mission given to us by Jesus for years to come.

Strengthening Our Parishes: $ Million

(Hebrews ) “We must consider how to rouse one another to love and good works.”

Parishes are where we meet the Lord in sacrament and community. It is at our parishes that we can best live our faith, call others to Christ, and help to build up the kingdom of God. For this reason, 35% of all funds raised up to the parish goal, 65% up to x the parish goal, and and % of every dollar over x the parish goal raised by the parish will fund the parish’s own mission and capital priorities. These funds will help parishes build new facilities for ministry, maintain current facilities, pay off debt, build parish endowments, or support other local needs. Parishes with significant projects can opt for a larger goal to meet those needs. The results of Witness to Hope will be stronger parishes, better able to advance the sacred mission of the Church.

Forming Our Youth and Families: $ Million

(Jeremiah ) “For I know well the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans for welfare and not for woe, so as to give you a future hope.”

The future of our faith revolves around the evangelization of our children and young families. To support this effort these funds will be used in the following manner:

Catholic School Financial Aid Endowment: $ Million

Making a Catholic education available to those families who cannot afford one is a priority of the Diocese of Lansing. These endowed funds will be used to provide need-based financial aid to students attending Catholic schools from grades K This endowment will augment the funds from the current school assessment and provide substantially more resources to assist families who desire the blessing of a Catholic education. Funds will be provided on a need basis and will be capped at $1, per child until the growth of the endowment allows for the cap to be raised.

Religious Education and Parent Formation: $ Million

Most children are formed in the foundation of their faith in the family and at the parish level. These funds will be endowed and used to provide each parish in the diocese with more resources to provide religious education through online programs such as “Formed.”* In addition, these funds also will allow parishes to provide the parents with a parallel online program that will more fully engage them in the religious formation of their children and inspire their deeper commitment to live their own faith within their families and parish community. The Evangelization Endowment will complement this effort by providing parish leaders with training to engage and actively involve parents in the religious education of their children and the life of their parish.

Evangelizing and Living Our Faith: $ Million

(Matthew ) “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and the Holy Spirit.”

Evangelization is considered the Church’s essential mission. We must find creative new approaches to present the timeless truths of our faith and inspire people to live in and for Jesus Christ as a part of a vibrant faith community. The Holy Father also has called us to provide support for those who live on the margins of our world. Living the Gospel message to care for those in need is an important evangelization effort that must be continued. These funds will be provided in addition to existing support from the DSA.

Catholic Charities Endowment: $ Million

The annual distribution from this endowment fund will be used to support ongoing and new direct service programs at the five Catholic Charities agencies. Each agency would receive funding every year, but the total amount provided to each agency would be determined based on proposals submitted to the Board of Directors of the Catholic Foundation of the Diocese of Lansing, and would be awarded based on funding need and service priority.

Catholic Charities Capital Needs: $ Million

The five Catholic Charities agencies serve the 10 counties of the diocese. Each of the Catholic Charities agencies and two important parish-based social ministry programs, with broad outreach, will benefit from capital support to improve their facilities so they can continue providing their vital services. These funds will be distributed as follows:

  • Catholic Charities of Shiawassee and Genesee . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .$ Million
  • St. Vincent Catholic Charities . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . $ Million
  • Livingston County Catholic Charities . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .$,
  • Catholic Social Services of Washtenaw County . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . $,
  • Catholic Charities of Jackson, Lenawee and Hillsdale Counties . . . . . . . . . .$,
  • Cristo Rey Community Center (Lansing) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .$,
  • St. Luke N.E.W. Life Center and Faith-in-Flint . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .$,

New Evangelization Initiatives: $3 Million

Supporting evangelization at the parish level, especially in the areas of leadership, youth and young adult ministry, and Hispanic ministry are essential to the future of the Church. These funds will support these ministries in the following ways:

  • Parish leadership training to increase the effectiveness of paid parish staff
  • Subsidies for lay and deacon training, especially Spanish-language training
  • Increased tuition subsidies for training for youth, young adult and Hispanic leaders
  • Evangelization grants to assist parishes in implementing cutting edge programs
  • Technology grants to allow parishes and the diocese to spread the Gospel of Jesus
  • Stipends for four evangelization coordinators from parishes who will serve as regional resource and support agents for ongoing evangelization efforts

Distance Learning and Ministry Training Centers: $,

Taking advantage of the latest communications technology, Witness to Hope will fund the creation of Distance Learning and Ministry Training Centers throughout the diocese. These will bring broad access to excellent programming for evangelization programs, leadership training and formation, and the support of other ministry activities for parishioners, staff, and volunteers at parishes and schools throughout the diocese.

Caring for Our Priests: $ Million

(2 Timothy ) “I have competed well, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.”

Priest Pension Fund: $ Million

After a life of service to the Church, it is right to honor the sacrifice of our priests and show our appreciation for their service by helping them retire and live their lives with dignity and required health care. As our priests are now living longer, these funds will bring the funding to an appropriate level for the present and future number of elderly priests in the Diocese of Lansing.

Seminarian Education and Formation Endowment: $3 Million

St. John Vianney Endowment for Collegiate Seminarians: $1 Million

The income of this endowment would be used to provide financial aid for collegiate level (undergraduate) seminarians on a need basis, which will be determined through the process currently used by the Board of Directors of the Bishop Joseph Albers Trust.

St. John Paul II Major Seminary Education and Formation Endowment: $2 Million

The income from this endowment fund also will be used for tuition, fees, and formation programs for seminarians of the Diocese of Lansing attending major seminary (pre-theology and graduate level), as assigned by the bishop of Lansing.

Supporting Our Shared Ministry: $6 Million

(2 Corinthians ) “Each must do as already determined, without sadness or compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.”

The Diocesan Service Appeal: $5 Million

Witness to Hope will sustain the operating costs for the essential ministries and programs funded by the DSA for the fiscal year There will be no direct solicitation for DSA in The DSA will resume in

Support for the Cathedral of St. Mary: $1 Million

These funds will be used to update the heating system, install air conditioning and improve the sound system in the Cathedral.

Sours: https://witnesstohope.net/the-campaign

Of lansing seminarians diocese

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