“Lord, make known Your will throughout the earth; proclaim Your salvation to every nation.”
Bishop W. Shawn McKnight led the antiphon for one of the psalms during a Holy Hour and Vespers for Vocations on Dec. 21 in the Cathedral of St. Joseph.
The seminarians of the Jefferson City diocese, home for Christmas, joined him in worshipping Jesus Christ in the Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar and praying for men and women of all ages to hear and answer God’s call to serve Him in their appointed way in the Church.
“Please continue to pray for and encourage our young people to make a generous response of their hearts to our God, Who is truly with us,” the bishop prayed.
A few days later, the seminarians were asked to share something they’re praying for in 2022, and what they hope to be giving thanks to God for by the beginning of 2023.
Here’s how several of them responded:
•Shane Kliethermes, a third-year collegian at Holy Trinity Seminary in Irving, Texas, said he will be praying for people who are battling mental illness, especially those who are experiencing anxiety and depression.
“Looking ahead toward the end of 2022, I am going to be especially grateful for all those supporting and praying for an increase in priestly vocations in our diocese,” said Mr. Kliethermes, a native of Immaculate Conception Parish in Jefferson City.
•Christopher Hoffmann, a third-year theologian and recently instituted acolyte at the Pontifical College Josephinum in Worthington, Ohio, said he plans to pray in 2022 for communities, especially families and parishes, to find ways to reconnect and grow closer to each other and Christ after being separated due to the pandemic, “and that all people may be able to find a community to be a part of.”
“I am looking forward to being thankful for all the pastoral experiences and new relationships that will come from them over the next year, as I am able to visit and serve in places that were closed months previously,” said Mr. Hoffmann, a native of St. Vincent de Paul Parish of Pettis County.
•John Paul McGuire, a first-year college seminarian at Holy Trinity Seminary, said he is praying for another good semester in the seminary “and also for the continuation of growing in my seminary formation.”
Mr. McGuire is a native of St. Brendan Parish in Mexico.
•Jacob Hartman, a fourth-year college seminarian at Holy Trinity Seminary, said that throughout 2022, he will be praying for the people of the diocese to gain a renewed love of Christ and His Church.
Mr. Hartman is a native of St. Andrew Parish in Holts Summit.
He will also be praying “for those who have fallen away from the Church during the pandemic — that like Joseph and Mary, they will experience the joy of finding Christ in the Temple, which is the Church.”
For himself, he will be praying “that I may grow to develop a deeper relationship with Jesus Christ, the High Priest.”
•Gage Neisen, a second-year college seminarian at Holy Trinity Seminary and native of Queen of Peace Parish in Ewing, said his prayer intentions always consist of and center on the family — “especially for my family and a continually deepening relationship within the faith.”
“I pray that all families can feel the love of the Holy Family this New Year,” he said. “I also pray for our country and for a greater sense of unity with itself and the other countries throughout the world.”
He will also continually pray for an end to the evil of abortion.
“I believe the Rosary is a great tool for praying for specific intentions such as these,” he said.
He’s looking forward to being grateful a year from now for seeing his family continue to be in a healthy and happy state.
“I have the great honor of being able to call myself an uncle and I look forward to seeing my niece turn another year older in November 2022,” he said.
“I also look forward to having grown in a deeper relationship with Jesus and becoming a better servant for the ever growing beauty of the Catholic Church,” he stated.