Nine Men Give Their Lives to Jesus Christ

Your generosity continues to bear fruit! Nine men, who were formed over the past seven years, were ordained to the priesthood on Saturday, May 20, at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, DC: from left: Fr. Vincent Bernhard, O.P., Fr. Michael Donahue, O.P., Fr. Dominic Koester, O.P., Fr. Zachary Sexton, O.P., Fr. Brendan Baran, O.P., Fr. Columba Thomas, O.P., Fr. Nicholas Hartman, O.P., Fr. Juan Macias Marquez, O.P., Fr. Raymond La Grange, O.P.

Since St. Dominic founded his Order of Preachers 800 years ago, the Dominican Friars have answered the Lord’s call by preaching for the salvation of souls. Today, the Dominican Friars of the Province of St. Joseph are arguably the best equipped group of men in the American Catholic Church to preach the truth to a culture that has forgotten there is even a truth to be known.

Presently, we have over 50 men in formation. Your continued generosity helps to form these men for the important work the Lord has called them— to make an offering of himself and lead souls to heaven.

We are excited to introduce you to our newly ordained Dominican priests! What follows are brief reflections on what drew these men to the Dominican Order and the priesthood of Jesus Christ.

“I was first attracted to the Dominicans through the Order’s attention to the liturgy and preaching. I was struck by the attention to solemn celebration of the liturgy, especially the Mass. I saw how the preaching of the priest at the Mass also contributed to the worship of God.”
—Fr. Brendan Baran, O.P.

“The beautiful liturgies and powerful preaching of the Dominicans drew me to the Order and the priesthood. As I came to know the Dominicans better, I realized that we are uniquely positioned to effectively proclaim the Gospel and give witness to the faith in a very secularized world.”
—Fr. Columba Thomas, O.P.

“Every man must choose where he will make the oblation of his life. How will he spend his life? What is the worthy way he will sacrifice his life? The Lord Jesus Christ stoked in my heart a zeal for the salvation of souls by preaching his Word. Under the guidance of the Blessed Virgin Mary, I found my Dominican brothers and the example of Holy Father Dominic as the models of sacrificial love. Praise God that I may be worthy to follow them.”
—Fr. Zachary Sexton, O.P.

“The closeness to Christ that one has through celebrating the sacraments, especially the Mass, and through guiding his people to know and love him, were initially what drew me to the priesthood. The Dominican Order’s emphasis on preaching in a way that draws from the contemplative life drew me to it.”
—Fr. Nicholas Hartman, O.P.

“What drew me to the Dominican life was our common life—praying together, working together, relaxing together. I think hearing the friars chanting the Divine Office was what really drew me to seriously consider a vocation in the first place. I want to give myself wholly to Jesus and to serve the Church as his priest, and I can’t imagine a better way to do this than with the support of my brothers in St. Dominic.”
—Fr. Dominic Koester, O.P.

“It has always been quite clear to me that it was God himself who drew me to the priesthood. His intimate calls early on in my life showed me the beauty of being conformed to Christ in a special way so as to participate in his saving mission. When I met the Dominicans and learned about St. Dominic and the Order’s many saints, I knew almost instantly that Jesus was asking me to be a priest in the particular way of St. Dominic by preaching the Gospel with joy in a fraternity of men consecrated to God.”
—Fr. Juan Macias Marquez, O.P.

“I was drawn to the priesthood because I saw the tremendous impact that priests can have on the lives of the faithful. The priest helps the people of God to encounter Jesus Christ, especially in the sacraments! Additionally, the Dominican Order’s focus on study and preaching for the salvation of souls drew me to the priesthood. I wanted to be able to preach Jesus Christ, who is the Way, the Truth, and the Life, so that others could experience his saving mercy and love.”
—Fr. Michael Donahue, O.P.

“From my childhood, I always wanted to know. Later on in my life, I wanted to give my life for Jesus and I wanted everything that Jesus would give me. So, I entered our Order in which we consecrate our lives to Jesus Christ for the sake of his Gospel. In return, we are able to spend our days studying and coming to know the Truth who is Jesus Christ.”
—Fr. Raymond La Grange, O.P.

“I was drawn by the call to closer friendship with Jesus Christ, totally dedicated to him and his service. St. Dominic was drawn in the same way. As a friend and priest of Jesus, he poured out his life for the salvation of souls. That is the kind of priest I wish to be—a priest of Jesus Christ after the example given to us by St. Dominic.”
—Fr. Vincent Bernhard, O.P.

These are the priests that will serve God and preach His saving Gospel to the Church and the world. If you would like to support our Dominican brothers in formation, we ask you to prayerfully consider making a donation using the form below.

God bless you and thank you for your generous support!

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