A picture of Fr. Sousa stands on Micki's computer desk and if you look closely, you will find that his picture has the crucifix on one side and Mary on the other side. Micki sees that picture everyday, so it reminds her to pray for Fr. Sousa daily. What a great idea!
And you know what else? Micki has this special way of hugging our priests. She sends her angel to give priests a hug. What an extraordinary woman she is! I think I might just do this myself, especially when I notice that a priest appears to be tired, sad and preoccupied.
Name of Seminary where you graduated from: Immaculate Conception Seminary Date of ordination: June 28, 2003 Parish assignment: St. Catherine of Sienna Parish, Rhode Island Date of birth: May 8th, 1968
1. How did you feel when you were ordained? It was the most special day of my entire life. Overjoyed & overwhelmed about finally being ordained a priest.
2. What would you consider to be the most important task of a priest? To go out and mix with those who think that they do not need God, because they need God most of all. To offer them the forgiveness and love of God.
3. Who is the most influential person in your life? My parents & Patrick & Nancy Latta of Medjugorje.
4. What is your favorite scripture passage? Always be prepared to make a defense to any one who calls you to account for the hope that is in you, yet do it with gentleness and reverence – 1Peter 15.
5. What do you do during your free time? Spend my time outdoors and gardening.
6. What is your favorite movie? Jesus of Nazareth .
7. How important is a parent's role in the life of a priest? Extremely important. A priest needs the support and prayers of his family to persevere.
8. What is your favorite music? Jazz.
9. What is your advice for parents on promoting religious vocation among the youth? Be open-minded and do not discourage them from the life if they feel called to it. Be good, holy examples of the Christian faith. Pray together as a family.
10. What makes you smile? Partaking in the fullness of God’s love and sharing it with others.
Below are the words of Fr. Sousa posted on his father's blog, In God's Company Too. It was these words that prompted me to consider adopting him as my spiritual son. I already have a spiritual son, a priest in my own diocese, but the words of Fr. Sousa drew me to the call of praying for him daily...
Have you ever considered adopting a Priest in prayer. Ask Mary to assign me to you. Love me like a brother in Christ. Pray for me daily. Become a saint so that I may become one. Pray that Mary be a tender Mother to me and find me good friends in Christ. Thank you for your prayers. May the Lord bless you and keep you and may his face shine upon you all the days of your life. May the Holy Spirit descend upon you and your family and all your loved ones.
Happy Father's Day, Fr. Sousa! God bless you abundantly!
The Serran in the Cleveland Diocese designed and had printed cards that could be sent to priests on Father's Day recognizing their work and thanking them for all they do for us. The priests that receive the cards will be remembered in a Mass once a month for a year.
Personally, these cards can be purchased for priests not just for Father's Day, but for any day one would wish to thank priests. Giving these cards to our priests is also a way of responding to the increasing plea of Pope Benedict XVI to support our priests. Beyond that, it is an expression of our love for Christ through his representatives that embraced the noble call to priesthood.
An offering of $5.00 per card will go a long way. All proceeds will be used for all efforts to recruit candidates for the priesthood, deaconate and religious life. Way to go!
They are available at Our Lady of Lourdes Shrine, 21281 Chardon Road in Euclid. All requests for cards can be sent to J.W. Schaut, 3219 Somerset Drive, Shaker heights, Ohio 44122. They may be ordered on-line from Bill Bengele (another Serran) at firstname.lastname@example.org. All checks be made payable to: Serra District #85 Foundation.
Fr. Steffes served as Pastor of St. Edward Church from 1979 to 1990. He succeeded, Fr. Ricardo Chavez, a diocesan priest. Fr. Steffes was the first CPPS pastor here at St. Edward.
Fr. Steffes was ordained June 1, 1958. His first solemn High Mass was offered at St. Anthony Church in Detroit. After ordination he served in Detroit, MI and in Cincinnati, OH, as a parochial vicar. He taught at Carroll High School in Dayton, OH before doing graduate studies at the University of Cincinnati. On finishing his studies Fr. Steffes came to California to serve as teacher at Cardinal Newman High School in Santa Rosa and in 1969 he became the principal.
In 1970 Fr. Steffes was elected to provincial leadership, serving as Councilor and as provincial Treasurer. In 1974 he was elected as Provincial Director. After leaving Provincial Leadership he served as a hospital chaplain for a year before coming to St. Edward in 1979.
After St. Edward he was administrator at St. Anthony in Manteca (1991), administrator at San Agustin Church in Scotts Valley and at St. Joseph in Spreckles (1994), and as Pastor at Christ Child Church in Los Gatos (1995). Currently he is retired and living at our Mission House in Berkeley with plans soon to relocate to our Retirement Center in Ohio.
Many long time parishioners have wonderful stories to tell about his time here. Sr. Mary Joseph Lyons, OP was principal of the school during some of his years here and remembers him as a “wonderful pastor.” She reports that he was good to work with, very cooperative and always consulted with her about the School. She liked his homilies, saying “he had a way with words, he got to the point and said it nicely.”
I served four years with Fr. Steffes here at St. Edward 1984-88. I remember particularly a homily he gave on Holy Thursday in 1988. The homily was my first real introduction to the scriptural image of the Lamb of God, and its centrality to our celebration of the Eucharist. Later that year when I told him that I would not be renewing my contract but instead enter the seminary Fr. Steffes wondered aloud how he could be upset and happy at the same time. One picture I treasure and which hangs on my wall is a photo of Fr, Steffes laying hands on my head during my ordination to the priesthood.
On this day we gather at St. Edwards for a special Mass at 10:00am to thank him for being such a good friend, teacher and Pastor, for his devotion to Jesus Christ and his faithfulness to the Mission of St. Gaspar del Bufalo. Happy Anniversary, Marvin. Ad Multos Annos.
Send your greetings to Fr. Steffes at email@example.com and I will forward them to Fr. Keyes. Thank you!