We are the Priests of the Sacred Heart – Dehonians!
We live in community, are inspired by daily Eucharistic Adoration, and in a fragmented world we believe unity to be possible.
Our ministries are diverse, as are our members. Yet our goal is the same: to work with a common heart in service to God’s people, reflecting the love of Christ as experienced by our founder, Fr. Leo John Dehon.
Are you called to a life of prayer and service based in the love of the Sacred Heart? Are you called to religious life as a priest or brother?
Have a question, ready to learn more? Email our vocation director at: firstname.lastname@example.org, or call us at 800-609-5559.
Two new postulants
Congratulations to Kenneth Anyanwu and Celsus Robert who were welcomed into postulancy during the February 7 First Friday liturgy at Sacred Heart Monastery on February 7.
Kenneth, originally from Nigeria, earned a master’s degree in Jewish-Christian studies from Seton Hall University before applying to candidacy. “Initially, what attracted me to the Priests of the Sacred Heart was the name,” said Kenneth. “When I inquired further, I learned that they have what I consider a captivating life and ministry which blends well with my personality, gifts and vision. The fact that the SCJs are committed to continuing Christ’s work of rebuilding our world into God’s kingdom of justice and love is a strong connection for me.”
Celsus is a native of St. Lucia. Prior to candidacy with the SCJs, he lived in Los Angeles and worked as a long-term case manager at Kaiser Permanente Hospital. Active in his home parish of St. John the Evangelist in Los Angeles, he served as a youth minister, a choir member and as a member of the parish council. He has undergraduate degrees in Social Work and Criminal Justice from Cheyney University (Pennsylvania) and an MBA in Healthcare Administration from California Southern University.
Postulancy is a time of preparation for novitiate. Fr. Andrzej Sudol, SCJ, is the director of postulants.
Come and See!
Fr. Quang is pictured here with Alejandro, one of the participants in February’s “Come and See,” an opportunity for young men discerning a vocation to religious life to literally “come and see” the Priests of the Sacred Heart (Dehonians). Are you discerning a call to religious life, to the priesthood? Contact our vocation director at email@example.com
Congratulations Frater Henry!
Congratulations to Frater Henry Nguyen, SCJ, who received the Institution of Acolyte during the January 7th Eucharist at the 2020 Provincial Conference. Frater Henry, 30, is a seminarian at Sacred Heart Seminary and School of Theology; he professed his first vows in 2018.
Originally from Orange County, California, Frater Henry is in his fifth year of formation. Before entering candidacy, he earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from California State University, Monterey Bay.
In his third year of theology, Frater Henry did an intensive CPE (Clinical Pastoral Education) program in San Antonio with CHRISTUS Santa Rosa Health System last summer. “With this experience, my understanding of the theology of pain and suffering grew more and more as I made myself available in order to be present with the sick and dying and their families,” said Frater Henry. He is scheduled to do his cross-cultural year in Chile, starting midsummer.
Meet our students!
Each year we ask our students in formation to introduce themselves. This year’s group includes six candidates, six professed seminarians, and four novices. They are men from a wide variety of cultural, educational and work backgrounds. Yet they all speak of their shared call to the spirituality found in the Priests of the Sacred Heart (Dehonians) and a desire to serve others.
“Religious life is a call but also a choice,” wrote Frater Hubert Kodjovi Liassidji, who just professed his first vows this year. “It is one thing to have a call but another to choose to respond to it. I chose to answer God’s call and through formation with the SCJs, I discovered and continue to discover my true identity. I recognize Christ by serving and giving myself to the poor, and further, I become a disciple of Jesus Christ through the teachings of Fr. Dehon.”
CLICK HERE to read more about our novices and candidates in formation.
Candidates and seminarians for the Priests of the Sacred Heart live at Sacred Heart Monastery in Hales Corners (Franklin), WI. They do their theological studies at Sacred Heart Seminary and School of Theology and undergraduate work at Marquette University in Milwaukee or Cardinal Stritch University . Our novitiate is located on a rural property approximately 15 miles south of Sacred Heart.
Are you discerning a vocation to the priesthood and/or religious life? Do you feel called to a life of community, prayer and ministry based in the love of the Sacred Heart? Contact our vocation director at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 1-800-609-5559.
Come and See!
Fr. Quang with participants at the September “Come and See,” an opportunity for young men discerning a vocation to religious life to literally “come and see” the Priests of the Sacred Heart (Dehonians). Are you discerning a call to religious life, to the priesthood? Contact our vocation director at email@example.com or call 800-609-5559
Finding strength in the Eucharist during CPE
SCJ seminarian Frater Henry Nguyen reflects on his summer CPE experience, working as a chaplain-intern at CHRISTUS Santa Rosa Health System in San Antonio:
“Con có cầu nguyện chưa” (Have you prayed yet?) and “Con nhớ cầu nguyện” (Remember to pray!)” were words which I often heard from my dad when I was growing up. The phrases continue to echo through my head, but no more so than they did during this past summer in the midst of my CPE (Clinical Pastoral Education) experience.
I did my CPE at CHRISTUS Santa Rosa Health System in San Antonio. Santa Rosa’s stated mission is to “Extend the Healing Ministry of Jesus Christ.” I came to see how similar this mission is to that of Sacred Heart Seminary and School of Theology’s vision: “To conform our world to the Heart of Christ.” Both the mission and vision speak to me as an SCJ, a Dehonian, who has chosen to live a life available with an open heart and an open mind to be a prophet of love and servant of reconciliation. [SCJ Mission Statement]
Each day I met with patients and their families; I attempted to provide both emotional and spiritual support. Every day when I knocked on a door, I wasn’t sure what I would find on the other side. Would it be a patient or family member who welcomed my presence, or would there be rejection, and perhaps even anger?
About halfway through CPE, I found that I had become distant mentally and socially, but also physically. I had trouble processing things. Burnout. It seemed that there was no way out. I felt the workload increasing; I had more patients to see. I didn’t feel like I had the opportunity to really reach out to anyone. And the list continued to get longer and longer. I started to isolate myself; others said that I was becoming withdrawn.
But eventually, I found my way through the Eucharist. It anchored me. It gave me strength. I thought of my father’s words: “Remember to pray!”
Click here to read Fra. Henry’s full reflection.
Four new novices!
On Wednesday, August 14, Thien Nguyen, Thuan Nguyen, Truc Van Tran and Hung Pham began their novitiate year in preparation for first vows with the Priests of the Sacred Heart. Fr. Ed Kilianski, SCJ, provincial superior, received the new novices during a ceremony in the novitiate chapel. Fr. Byron Haaland, SCJ, is novice master, and Fr. Andrzej Sudol, SCJ, is associate novice master. Click here to read more about them. Click here to view photos from the ceremony.
Three receive Ministry of Lector from Fr. General
Fr. Carlos Luis Suarez Codorniú, SCJ, superior general, spent much of last week in the US Province, primarily for meetings in the Milwaukee (Hales Corners) area. During his visit, he joined the Novitiate Community for prayer and dinner on Tuesday, and on Thursday, May 2, he conferred the Ministry of Lector on three of our Dehonian seminarians: Fraters Henry Nguyen, Phong Paul Hoang and Huan Duy Pham.
“Enjoy the Word and share the Word,” said Fr. Carlos Luis to the three seminarians, who are students at Sacred Heart Seminary and School of Theology. Fraters Henry and Paul are members of the US Province and Frater Huan is from the Vietnamese District. St. Joseph’s Chapel was filled with members of the Sacred Heart Monastery community and several guests from SHSST.
“I give thanks to God for my vocation with the SCJs. I am grateful to the community for giving me an education, the gift of community, valuable ministry experiences, personal growth, and most importantly, a love for the Heart of Jesus,” said Frater Paul, 26, when professing his vows last year.
Frater Henry, 30, was Frater Paul’s novitiate classmate. About his own vocation, he said that it “calls me to do love in all things. By being ‘Henry of the Heart of Jesus,’ I feel that it is my duty to respond to the lack of God’s love in the world, by spreading God’s love to where people need it most. By becoming an SCJ, I take on a social responsibility, a tug to be present with others.”
Frater Huan, 33, did his initial formation in the Philippines and professed his first vows in 2017. “What was significant in helping me to make my decision to join the Priests of the Sacred Heart was the pierced Heart of Jesus from which I saw a true source of love, hope, and fulfillment of my life,” he said. “Dehonians, in their own charismatic way, essentially attracted and impacted me with their motto of being ‘Prophets of Love and Servants of Reconciliation.’”