Priest brothers and cousin say parents led to their vocation
One priest or religious sister in a family might not be normal, but what about brothers and cousins? This is the case for this family, who came to Rome for the ordination of the most recent priest in the family, Fr. John Studer.
Both he and his cousin, Fr. Andrew DeFusco mentioned the upcoming ordination of Matt DeFusco in Baltimore on June 22. They say their religious vocations are partly due to the faith passed on by their parents.
FR. ANDREW DEFUSCO
Diocesian priest in Baltimore
“Both my parents, you know, just taught us from an early age that the most important thing in life is to be like Christ and to be a saint and to live forever. So they always encouraged us, you know, and we thought about what we want to do with our lives, that we had to ask God what He wanted. It's a great blessing for me. I say that my, my brother is going to be a priest.”
FR. JOHN STUDER
Legionary of Christ priest
“It was the parents. That they taught us little by little. Going to the church, going to adoration, going to daily Mass when we could. All that, that's all ways that the parents pass on the faith.”
Yet, it was not only the parents, but also grandparents who played a large role in these cousins' vocation as priest.
Fr. Andrew's dad
“They got to know their grandparents pretty well. I think that was a tremendous blessing. I think it helped steer them toward a vocation.”
One of the most beautiful moments for the parents is the ordination. They are able to receive communion from their son as priest for the first time and witness each man receive their vestments.
Fr. John Studer was just ordained at the beginning of May in Rome, Italy as a Legionary of Christ. His family came in for the event and his parents admit it was quite emotional.
JANE AND PAUL STUDER
Fr. John's parents
“Just very, very happy. And very blessed.” “I'll have to, matter of fact, just say that I became very emotional. And I broke down and cried, seeing all the men walking out becoming priests, priests forever.”
Fr. Andrew was ordained five years ago, yet his parents still remember how they felt that day.
CAROLINE AND ANDREW DEFUSCO
Fr. Andrew's parents
“The ordination, and then the first Mass, it's very emotional. Yet, it's hard not to cry. You know, you try to think back of all the people that were a part of their vocation and their journey and the prayers.” “We're very proud of our two sons. We're also proud of our two daughters, who are wives and mothers, each having three children.”
While these priests won't have immediate families of their own with biological children, they say family is essential in their lives, since it gave them the faith and enabled them to find their true vocation.