Bishop Siegel celebrates Candidacy Mass for two seminarians

Seminarians Dylan Stefanich (left) and Jacob Schneider were accepted as candidates for Holy Orders by Bishop Joseph M. Siegel during the May 19 Mass at Corpus Christi Parish. The Message photo by John Rohlf

By John Rohlf

The Message Assistant Editor 

Seminarians Jacob Schneider and Dylan Stefanich were admitted as candidates for Holy Orders during a Mass May 19 at Corpus Christi Parish in Evansville.

Bishop Joseph M. Siegel celebrated the Candidacy Mass at Corpus Christi for the two seminarians. During the ceremony, Schneider and Stefanich resolved to complete their preparation so that in due course, they are ready to undertake the ministry of the Church through Holy Orders. They also resolved to form their mind and heart in such a way that they will be able to faithfully serve Christ, the Lord and his body, the Church. Bishop Siegel said the church received their resolve with joy. He said may God who has begun this good work in them bring it to fulfillment.

Deacon Tom Goebel incenses those in attendance during the May 19 Candidacy Mass. The Message photo by John Rohlf

Both seminarians are in the Class of 2028. A son of Corpus Christi Parish, Schneider studies at the Bishop Simon Bruté Seminary in Indianapolis, Indiana. A son of Holy Cross Parish in Fort Branch, Stefanich studies at Kenrick-Glennon Seminary in St. Louis, Missouri. 

Four priests concelebrated the 10 a.m. Candidacy Mass with Bishop Siegel, which coincided with Pentecost Sunday. 

During his homily, Bishop Siegel said the coming of the Holy Spirit is not so much the end of Jesus’ activity but the beginning of something new. He said Pentecost is not so much a one-time event in the life of the Church but a way of life in which all of us name, claim and proclaim our identity and mission as followers of Jesus Christ and members of his body in the Church. He said as missionary disciples, we are to reach out to all to share our faith with joy and conviction. 

Bishop Siegel said in Sunday’s Gospel, the risen Jesus meets his disciples, breathes the Holy Spirit on them and sends them forth to continue the mission he started. He said the disciples were locked away in fear when Jesus came. He said like them, we live in a world where there is much to fear and much cause for worry and anxiety. He said when we open ourselves to the Holy Spirit, we will be unshackled from our fears and move beyond our complacency and safe spaces. He added we will be able to go with courage wherever the Holy Spirit leads us. 

He continued that when it comes to the Spirit, we might not always know exactly where the journey will lead us but said that every road ultimately gets us closer to the heart of Christ and his Church and ultimately to heaven. He said if we open our hearts to the working of the Holy Spirit, Christ will use us and our talents in ways we never imagined. 

Bishop Siegel said as they commemorated the first Pentecost, we pray for a new Pentecost in our world and Church today and that this Spirit and his gifts will heal in the world the divisions that still beset us as a human race. He said we also pray that this Spirit and his gifts will heal the Church.

Seminiarians Dylan Stefanich (bottom row, third from left) and Jacob Schneider (bottom row, middle) are shown with Bishop Joseph M. Siegel (top row, third from left), clergy and altar servers after the Candidacy Mass. The Message photo by John Rohlf