How many men have found their vocation in a McDonald’s? That’s not quite the way it happened for Fr. Jeremy Paulin, OMV, but it was a fortuitous meeting with a OMV seminarian in the fast-food emporium that prompted him to pay a visit to the Order in which he would find his home.
Several points struck home with me.
First, his family upbringing. He was the eighth of ten children and his diligent Father threw out the family TV. Funny how the more channels there are on television, the less there is to watch. His parents also took him out of the public school because they were concerned about what was being taught. Obviously, they were not concerned about winning a popularity contest at home! Strange how parents seem smarter the older we get!
Secondly, the OMVs. If you are looking to do the Spiritual Exercises, a must for any serious Catholic, go on an OMV retreat. Their founder, Ven. Bruno Lanteri, was taught the spiritual exercises by a Jesuit and concluded that doing the Spiritual Exercises is an excellent way for a person to become a great saint.
A new biography of this holy man called called Begin Again by Fr. Timothy Gallagher, OMV, is now available. The Oblates’ founder had a favorite saying: Nunc Coepi, “Now I begin.” It is the perfect motto for a community that tries to bring people to understand God’s love for them and His mercy, especially through the sacrament of Reconciliation.
Finally, if you are a young man or know of one who is seriously discerning a vocation, direct him to the OMVs. They are a small order (200 men) but growing. They have 75 men in formation! They teach, offer parish missions and retreats, and spiritually support diocesan clergy. They are also known for their orthodoxy and fidelity to the Holy Father and the Church.