To the peripheries

Claretian
Seminarians

These are the men studying to be Claretian Missionaries for the USA-Canada Province. They are from different countries, with different stories, and in different levels of study. Their vocation stories are unique and inspiring. If you are discerning, their stories may help you on your journey. We ask you to pray for them as they continue walking the path God has laid out for them.

David Gutierrez, CMF
Level of Study: 4th year Theology
Fresno, California

It all began with a simple question: “What do you want me to do, God?” Never did I imagine that the question would lead me on a path of discernment. Growing up near a Claretian parish helped me discern with the Claretians. However, it was the charism, the mission, and the members that inspired me to join the Claretian Missionaries. It has not always been easy, but it has been a more fulfilling life than I could have ever hoped for.

Norbert Medina, CMF
Level of Study: 3rd year Theology
Houston, Texas

The reason I selected the Claretian Congregation was because I was very interested in being a missionary-- to be sent out someplace. Most of my life I lived in Texas and I wanted to expand my horizons to go somewhere else and I did. I was actually sent to Sri Lanka for my novitiate which was wonderful.

Tien Vu, CMF
Level of Study: 3rd year Theology
Vietnam

My vocation started when I was a small boy wherein I found the black cassock of priests was very attractive. I wanted to wear it someday. So my dream of becoming a priest started at that moment even though the motivation was not that pure. However, eventually I began to develop deep love for God and desire to serve the poor and the marginalized. The Claretian congregation’s devotion to our Blessed Virgin Mary and Saint Anthony Mary Claret’s discipleship moved me to join the Claretian Missionaries. 

Ray John Mejorada, CMF
Level of Study: 3rd year Theology
Philippines

My vocation started when I was an altar server helping my parish priest to put his vestments on. I was in awe at how captivating his vestments were. And so, I asked myself, how would it feel when I will also wear my own vestments in the future? I continued my discernment until my vocation was confirmed at search-in where I heard the song The Pilgrim’s Theme with the chorus, “why don’t we follow the voice that calls within?” I pondered that question and reflected that, if God is calling me, then I responded YES every day.

I was discerning for a while with the diocese but I think just a missionary lifestyle of the Claretians really attracted me. This was really interesting because I never met the Claretians until one day a Claretian at the Fresno congress just walked up to me and asked me “do you want to be a missionary?” At first I was like stuck and stunned. I didn't know what to say. But he walked with me in the process and really drew me to the Claretian’s lifestyle.

Nelson Espinosa
Level of Study: 4th year Philosophy
Tulare, California

My vocation was inspired by my curiosity of finding and possessing the ultimate happiness, Goodness and love. I know I have people who love me, but they might not love me ultimately (especially in my failures). I know I have things that are good, but their goodness is finite. So, I decided to seek and possess God as the ultimate Happiness, Goodness and Love, and to share them with other people who long for them. Then, I started discerning my vocation. My vocation was also inspired by the humble lives of service of missionary-priests, nuns, etc. as Jesus’ ministers.

Ulengabo Berthold
Level of Study: 3rd year Philosophy
Congo