National Vocations Week!

November 2, 2023
Dear Parishioners and Friends of St. John’s,
We are called to be holy, that is we are called to become like God and share in his goodness. We are called to be saints. It was truly a joy to see so many of our students and parishioners dress up like saints for our Annual Saint Party! We had almost 200 this year, which continues to grow. 

The saints imitated God and we are invited to do the same. We have statues and images to remind us of those amazing people who followed in the footsteps of Christ. Yes, we have them in our church and throughout our campus, but I encourage you to have images of your saints in your homes. I still have small statues of my patron saints that I received growing up. My parents bought me a small statue of St. Francis back in 1989 at the Grotto of Redemption in West Bend when we did a family pilgrimage there. I also have a statue of St. Joseph that I received in 1996 from my Grandma on the occasion of my First Holy Communion. Those statues are visible reminders of the invitation to holiness.

This coming week is National Vocation Awareness Week. Here at SJB, we are grateful for the many religious sisters who have served in our school. Most recently we have had the Dominican Sisters of the Most Holy Rosary in the Philippines. Before them for the first 5 decades of our school, the Franciscan Sisters of Sylvania served so generously in our school. Sister Clarinda, a Franciscan Sister continues to serve at SJB in teaching adults. Sr. Rose Vu, a Good Shepherd sister, is also active in our community. 

We are grateful at SJB to be a teaching parish, where we receive seminarians from the St. Paul Seminary and they learn about parish life during their last 4 years of seminary. We also have two seminarians from St. John Vianney College Seminary helping with our Middle School youth program. We also host a summer deacon and help them grow into their vocation for the 10-week summer program. We are grateful to partner with our seminaries to support the development of priestly vocations. Not only do they grow through their time with us, we grow in our faith through their ministry here. 

If you know of someone who is interested in learning more about the vocation to the priesthood or religious life, please let me know. Please join me in praying for more vocations to the priesthood, diaconate, and consecrated life: O God, we earnestly ask You to bless this archdiocese with many priests, Brothers, and Sisters who will love You with their whole strength and gladly spend their entire lives to serve your Church and to make You known and loved. Bless our families, bless our children. Choose from our homes those needed for your work. Mary, Queen of the Clergy, pray for us, pray for our priests, Religious, and deacons. Obtain for us many more. Amen.

Father Paul Shovelain