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Newsletter of Mater Dei Seminary
February 2006

Other articles in this newsletter:
   Moral Theology: Extreme Unction Unconsciously Received by the Conscious


Dear friends and benefactors,

One of the many blessings for which Fr. Gregory Drahman, Fr. Gronenthal, and I can never thank God enough is the grace to be associated with our major seminary. Not only is it a privilege to help teach and train our future priests, but it is also a tremendous support to keep up our spiritual lives and to sharpen the intellect in the areas of philosophy, theology and canon law by the regular courses.

With multiple churches, chapels and Mass centers to administer to, we travel many miles to bring the Sacraments to the faithful throughout the Midwest every weekend. Sunday is the Lord's Day and a day of rest, but not for our priests. And when we do return, there are classes to teach Monday through Friday, both in the seminary and in our parish high school.

After a long trip, it is like a return to a retreat to come back to the seminary with its common prayers, spirit of silence and recollection, and regular schedule, all centered around Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament. This provides such a spiritual recharging after the stress of our never-ending priestly activities. When we and the seminarians gather for prayers, how uplifting it is to pray in common, and at a set time every day, the Divine Office, the Rosary, meditation, morning and night prayers.

For the laity and for our priests who are on their own, it takes a lot of self-discipline to keep to a regular schedule day in and day out. How easy it is to put off prayers for one reason or another. How difficult it can be at times to pray on your own! When we pray in common, we support one another and uplift each other spiritually.

Our regular schedule provides a tremendous stability to all the activities of each day. As St. Augustine once wrote, “Order is our guide to God, and whatever comes from God is always well-ordered.” And St. Gregory reiterated this also: “He who lives according to rule, lives according to God.” Finally, St. Bernard added, “Keep order, that order may keep you.” In the spiritual life, there is never a standing still; we are either going forward or backward. How advantageous to live in the seminary and have a spiritual atmosphere so conducive to spiritual growth.

But this advantage of seminary life is not only limited to the spiritual realm; year after year we teach the seminarians in philosophy, theology and canon law and this keeps the intellect sharp to the sciences. This is something we often reiterate to the priests and seminarians. After ordinations, we need to continue to review our studies regularly. Our involvement with the seminary wonderfully provides this necessary review.

With the season of Lent quickly approaching, the spiritual reading at meal times at the seminary has been The Passion and Death of Our Lord Jesus Christ by Archbishop Goodier. How masterly he takes the four Gospels and chronologically arranges them to give such a clear insight into the sufferings of Our Lord. I highly recommend all of our readers to find a good book on the Passion and make it your companion during this upcoming Lent. Meditation on the sufferings of Christ is one of the best means to grow in the knowledge and love of Our Divine Savior.

May all of you have a grace-filled Lenten season!

With my prayers and blessing,
Most Rev. Mark A. Pivarunas, CMRI

Other articles in this newsletter:
   Moral Theology: Extreme Unction Unconsciously Received by the Conscious

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Printed copies of Adsum, a publication by the seminarians of Mater Dei Seminary for the reading enjoyment of friends and benefactors, are sent free of charge to all who request it. Most issues also contain photos of recent events involving the seminarians. If you would like to put on this mailing list, please use this form.

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