July 8, 2016

Teens get a taste of life in the seminary during Bishop Bruté Days

Kneeling in prayer during the June 16 Mass are John Paul Malinoski, left, Patrick Barron, Leo Ocampo—all members of Our Lady of the Most Holy Rosary Parish in Indianapolis—and Isaac Williams, a member of St. John the Apostle Parish in Bloomington.

Kneeling in prayer during the June 16 Mass are John Paul Malinoski, left, Patrick Barron, Leo Ocampo—all members of Our Lady of the Most Holy Rosary Parish in Indianapolis—and Isaac Williams, a member of St. John the Apostle Parish in Bloomington.

By Sean Gallagher

The teenage boys from across the state of Indiana and beyond who participate in Bishop Bruté Days get to pray, learn about the faith and themselves, and have fun in the process.

It’s not unlike what daily life is like at the archdiocesan-sponsored Bishop Simon Bruté College Seminary in Indianapolis, which has annually held the vocations retreat and camping experience for teenage boys since 2005.

(Related: See a photo gallery from this event)

And that’s part of the purpose of Bishop Bruté Days, to help young men get a taste of what life is like in the seminary.

That’s what Joseph Yoder, a member of St. Joseph Parish in Jennings County, experienced when he attended Bishop Bruté Days on June 14-17 at the seminary.

“I’ve been considering the priesthood for a long time, really,” said Joseph, who will be a home-schooled high school junior in the fall. “And I wanted a deeper view of what seminary life is like. I’ve learned and seen a lot about what’s going on here. I like it.”

The camp drew a record number of participants this year at 55, bringing in teenage boys from as far north as South Bend and as far south as Louisville, Ky.

From within the archdiocese, participants came from eight of the 11 deaneries and from 17 parishes.

The large group of teenagers participating in this latest Bishop Bruté Days was encouraging to Father Joseph Moriarty, who was vice rector of the seminary when it occurred. On July 6, he began his ministry leading the seminary as its rector.

“It renews my hope in the fact that men are discerning and they’re discerning from an early age, as I did when I served at Mass and sometimes reflected on what it would be like to be a priest,” said Father Moriarty. “Whether they become priests or not, it’s important to them to have God within their lives. To me, that’s an incredible witness, both of what their parents have done and what they’re doing.”

This year’s Bishop Bruté Days was the last major event at the seminary overseen by its founding rector, Father Robert Robeson, who will become pastor of Most Holy Name of Jesus Parish in Beech Grove on Aug. 1.

“I’m going to miss it,” Father Robeson said. “I love working with the kids. It gets better every year. The kids are so endearing. I get to know them really well.

“They’re just so earnest about their desire to learn, to grow in their faith and do better in serving God.”

While this Bishop Bruté Days was the last for Father Robeson, it was the first for Ryan Rasmussen, a member of St. Aloysius Parish in Pewee Valley, Ky., who will be a junior in the fall at Immaculate Classical Academy in Louisville.

“It kind of helps you to know what it would be like to be in the seminary,” Ryan said. “It’s given me a little bit more of an open mind.

“I hope that what I’m learning here will help me in my life. What does God want me to do in this moment, and in all of the moments of my life?”

He and the other participants got the chance to ponder such questions during presentations on the faith, daily Mass, eucharistic adoration, a nighttime eucharistic procession on the seminary grounds, praying the rosary and having the chance to participate in the sacrament of penance.

They also had fun interacting with each other in games like a scavenger hunt, football, soccer and team dodgeball.

Joe Paul Hayden, a seminarian for the Evansville, Ind., Diocese who will be a junior at Bishop Bruté in the fall, said the balancing of prayer, learning and social time is important both at Bishop Bruté Days and for him and the other seminarians in their daily life through the academic year.

“It’s my rule of life here,” he said. “I need to have a balance among all of this in order to really grow as Joe Paul Hayden to the man God wants me to be.”

All of this happens in the context of the beautiful castle-like seminary building and its lush grounds—something that archdiocesan seminarian Michael Dedek, who spent three years at Bishop Bruté, says is important.

“You can’t find a building like this everywhere,” said Dedek, a member of St. Charles Borromeo Parish in Bloomington. “And I think it’s really important that the kids spend some time in a place like this. That’s the way it was for me. I wasn’t really sure about joining the seminary until I visited. Spending time here makes the vocation seem real.”
 

(To learn more about Bishop Simon Bruté College Seminary, visit www.archindy.org/bsb.)

Local site Links:

Like this story? Then share it!