by Adam Maher
I grew up in a small town. Church was just something we did on Sundays. Both my dad and my mom had great faith in God. I was always taught to trust God, have faith in him, and place all my worries in his hands. I was never taught the details of the Catholic Faith. A personal relationship was not something I had really cultivated while growing up. I didn't read the Bible and I didn't really know Jesus.
All through high school I lived a self-centered life. My main concerns were sports, girls, and popularity. Faith was not a main focus for me. I did not have a personal relationship with Jesus at that time. I often compromised my morals to win the praise of others.
I began to form destructive habits involving alcohol and partying with friends. All of this behavior carried into college and I began to experience the consequences of my immoral actions. By the end of my second year of college, I had already gone to the hospital three times due to alcohol related incidents, had gotten in trouble with the law, and had been kicked out of my apartment with no other place to stay.
I had hit rock bottom. I remember one night praying for help on my knees. At that moment, I realized that I really didn't know the One to whom I was praying. God had put it on my heart right then and there to read his Word and get to know him. That year, I read through the whole New Testament and fell in love with the Lord! I knew in my heart that God was calling me to give my entire life to him. I was not sure at the time just how he wanted me to serve him, though.
I had thought God was calling me to be a teacher. In fact, I earned a degree in elementary special education and taught for two years, but at the end of the two years I felt God was leading me to give myself to him as a priest. I spoke to my parish priest and he advised me to pray about it for a year. That year, I made it a point to pray the Rosary every day and ask God for guidance. At the end of the year, my desire to serve God as a priest had grown and he had given me an amazing peace about pursuing this vocation.
I believe that prayer and Our Blessed Mother helped me to say yes to God's call.
I am now in my fifth year at Sacred Heart and am about to be ordained a deacon for the Diocese of Saginaw. Each year has been a joy! The seminary has given me all the resources and tools to grow in my call. At Sacred Heart, we are surrounded by the Sacraments, prayer, and holy priests who help to form our hearts after the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus.
Adam MaherAdam Maher is a third-year theology seminarian for the Diocese of Saginaw.