Now it is a pleasure to introduce to you one of our seminarians who joined us from Medellin, Colombia, several years ago. It’s been a long road for Ruben Dario Garcia Sanchez, yet he continues to work toward one day being a priest of God, ready to serve the Diocese of Norwich.
Father Greg Galvin, Director of Vocations
I am Rubén Darío García Sánchez, I was born in the city of Medellín, Colombia. I am the fourth son of Manuel García and Rosalba Sánchez. I have two sisters and a brother, who has been a priest for 15 years. I also have four nieces. I was linked to the seminary of Medellín, where I received a Canonical Baccalaureate in philosophy. I advanced my studies in theology there and I also received the candidacy for the Holy Orders (Admissio ad Ordines) and the ministry of the lectorate.
In 2012 I first became linked to the Diocese of Norwich and started studying English as a second language. After a year and a half of studies and having consulted with Father Greg Galvin, vocation director of the diocese, I decided to return to Colombia. Being in my home city, I resumed my job as a teacher in the areas of religious education and philosophy. I must also say that I have been a teacher for vocation.
In 2017 I returned to the diocese to continue the English as a second language program, a program that I completed at the University of Connecticut. Last year I was accepted at Mount Saint Mary Seminary in Emmitsburg, Maryland, to finish my priestly formation. I just finished the first year of theology.
As I mentioned earlier, I feel that God has called me through people and I believe that one of them was a former pastor in my home parish in Colombia, Father Gerardo Díaz Molina. I consider him to be a model of a diocesan priest, who enjoys celebrating with great joy the sacraments, preaching the word of God and inviting everyone to be holy.
In addition, I must also mention my brother and my best friend (Father Camilo) in Colombia who have become priestly models. Nor can I overlook the support and example that I have received from some priests here in the Diocese: Larry LaPointe, George Richard, Brian Converse, Michael Giannitelli, Juan Ángel Aguirre, Michael Castiblanco, Jonathan Ficara, Henry Agudelo and Greg Galvin. In all of them, some with the longest experience in the priestly life and others walking their first steps in the ministry, I have been able to understand the words of Pope Francis: "Shepherds with the odour of the sheep," -- that is, priests who work with the people of God and for the people of God.
I would like to end this short story about my vocation saying that following in the footsteps of Jesus implies accepting certain challenges. One of them, in my case, was learning a new language. However, I have been willing to accept this and many other challenges because I have understood the words of Jesus in the Gospel: “I am with you always, until the end of the age."