My Source of Inspiration
by Seminarian Juan Manuel Osorno

Being in the seminary is challenging but rewarding; we are in a process of transformation or, like our rector Monsignor David Toups often says, “renovation and expansion.” In my own journey of discerning the call to share in the priesthood of Jesus Christ, I’ve found that the people of God in the parish play an essential role in that transformation.

During my pastoral year at Holy Redeemer in Kissimmee, I realized my true call to serve, to be present, and to be Christ for others. Experiencing parish life, being involved in different ministries and getting to know the people, their needs, their wisdom, and their struggles was an experience that affirmed my vocation and brought a lot of growth at a personal level. I experienced a greater desire to be a better person and to strive for holiness. This desire, which God desires even more, is God’s gift. It is an answer to the prayers of the community and is my own prayer. I pray to be better because the people of God deserve the best.

No matter how good the formation in the seminary is, I cannot see the true value and reality of my vocation without pastoral experience and the support of the community. Through the encounter with the people of God, I gain my strength.  They are my source of inspiration and motivation to continue, especially when I am experiencing difficult times. At the end of my pastoral year, when I was saying goodbye to the people of Holy Redeemer, they filled my heart with hope. They want me to come back as a priest to serve them. I want that, too.

I will continue to pray to grow in intimacy with the Lord, in order to discern more faithfully his call.


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