Note: Recent graduate Brian Jacobson, of the Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas, shares his reflection on his call to the priesthood and his time at Conception.
First and foremost, I am a beloved son of an amazing Father. Like many young men, I love friends and family, sports, the great outdoors, and I’m currently in the Nebraska Air National Guard, a component of the Air Force. I’m from Overland Park, Kansas, which is in the Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas. Raised in a loving, Catholic, pro-vocation home, I grew up with my older brother and three younger sisters. My upbringing and the investment of my parents in sharing the faith with their children allowed me the freedom to be inquisitive about other faiths and beliefs, while knowing how to pursue the truths of the Catholic faith.
From a young age, I prayed for my future vocation and was open to both marriage and the priesthood. I think the first time I found the priesthood attractive was when I noticed they didn’t have to kneel during Mass like the rest of us in the pews. That was a pretty great revelation until I discovered that females are also very attractive and maybe kneeling is not so bad after all.
Needless to say, I’ve come a long way since then. While dating in college, I quickly realized that I could either keep growing in my faith which meant re-opening myself up to the possibility of seminary, or I could ignore that call and keep dating. As one captivated by the beauty and love of Christ in the Blessed Sacrament, I knew I had to start considering seminary. It was then that I realized that I could not progress in my relationship with my girlfriend at the time without first considering the priesthood, and so I reluctantly began applying to seminary.
The decision to come to seminary has been the most challenging and absolutely the most rewarding thing I’ve done in my life so far. I’m challenged every day to grow as a person through self-knowledge and discovery rooted in the burning love that God has for each one of us. Unfortunately for me, coming to seminary did not mean I flipped a switch and became a saint. Working through my shortcomings, weaknesses, and wounds has been very painful at times, but it has all been worth it because this is how sainthood and heaven become possible. Living on a campus that is run by Benedictine monks has been powerful in showing me ways to concretely live out our baptismal call to poverty, chastity, and obedience. Through the guidance of several of the monks, I have grown to love Sacred Scripture and praying it through a meditative practice of lectio divina.
The Eucharist, the Blessed Mother, and my brother seminarians have become my sustaining pillars. I think these are foundations that everyone can adopt as well, no matter their stage of life. Our Lord, our Mother, and good friends are essential for all of us in our journey to heaven.
After seminary, God willing, I’ll be ordained a priest in 2025! This seems so far away, yet my time at Conception has simply flown by. Such is life when we reflect on some of our best memories. I am hoping to commission into the Navy as a chaplain where I will be able to serve the Navy, Marines, or Coast Guard depending on where I am assigned. It has been an honor to serve next to the men and women in our military part-time for the last five years, and I look forward to serving some of the most courageous, selfless, faithful people I know in a deeper way in the future.
Conception Seminary College will always have a special place in my heart. This is a quiet place where I can reach God in an intimate way. Though the domestic church, my home, was the first place where I learned the faith, Conception’s contributions to my faith through theology and philosophy have left a remarkable imprint on me. I will never forget the many laughs, tears, deep talks, snowball fights, basketball tournaments, and adventures that I’ve had the privilege of sharing with so many men striving for the Lord. X
— Brian Jacobson
Senior, Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas