Five Men Start Postulancy Year

by Roxanne King

Accepted as postulants this year for the Province of St. Conrad are five men who range in age from 19 to 38 and hail from several states, including Colorado. (A sixth man's entrance has been delayed due to unforeseen circumstances.) Postulancy is a one-year period of formation between being a candidate and entering the novitiate. The postulants live at Solanus Casey Friary in Colorado Springs under the direction of Capuchin Father Frank Grinko. "They look at us and we (the formation directors) look at them," Father Grinko said. "It's a time of prayer, study, fraternity and ministry." Father Grinko described the group as "eager to be part of things." Profiles of the men follow.

Born: Circleville, Ohio. Reared: Los Angeles, Calif.; Kentucky
“I graduated from the University of Pittsburgh in 2007 with a B.A. in English literature. I have worked in restaurants, libraries and as a teacher's assistant. The last few years I worked with people with intellectual disabilities. Of those experiences, my work with the L'Arche community in Jacksonville, Fla., was the most fruitful and important.

I am an adult convert (Easter 2008). I felt drawn to consecrated life during the R.C.I.A process, however, time needed to be given to discern the initial conversion experience from a call to the religious life or priesthood. I have spent some time discerning with monastic orders in the past. My time with them is a treasure.

The Holy Spirit is the true guide (to one's call). I was drawn to the Capuchin community because of its focus on contemplation, community and a covenant with the poor. After having visited several friaries, it was the witness of the brothers themselves that further drew me.”

Born: La Junta, Colo. Reared: Fort Morgan, Colo.
“I studied for two years at the University of Colorado in Boulder and would be one year away from graduating with a B.A. in philosophy. I also spent last summer teaching Totus Tuus for the Denver Archdiocese.

I first felt called in third grade, but ignored it. My freshman year of college the call was placed back on my heart. During my summer of teaching Totus Tuus I began a more serious discernment with the Capuchins.

The humanity, fraternity and holiness of the brothers, especially one who taught Totus Tuus alongside me, are what initially drew me to the Capuchin order. Through that and experiences at Mass of God nudging my heart toward Francis and the order, my heart was opened and my mind formed into walking down the road that led me (here).”

Born and reared: Fairfax, Va.
“I graduated from Saint John Paul the Great Catholic High School in Dumfries, Va., and earned a B.A. in psychology from James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Va. After graduating, I moved to Denver to be a missionary with Christ in the City.

I first felt called to religious life in the middle of my senior year of college. I knew I would have regular contact with the Capuchins in Denver during my missionary year so I decided to discern with them. I have felt more particularly called to being a religious brother, however, I remain open to God's will if he so chooses to direct me to the priesthood.”

Born: Cape Girardeau, Mo. Reared: Kelso, Mo.
“I graduated from Notre Dame Regional High School in 2005 and went to one semester of college at Southeast Missouri State in Cape Girardeau, Mo., before taking a position as an apprentice lineman with Ameren UE in Cape Girardeau in 2006. In 2009 I took a position as a journeyman lineman working out of the union hall, primarily in the eastern half of the country. The last two years I have been helping to care for a family member who requires extra attention.

Looking back I can now see where the Lord has been talking to me with that inner small voice my whole life but I really didn't start to slow down and listen to him seriously until somewhere around five or so years ago. As a postulant, my focus is on discerning the Capuchin brotherhood, but if I was now at the point in formation where you decide between the brotherhood track and the priesthood track, I would say that I feel the Lord guiding me toward priesthood.

A few of the things that drew me to the Capuchins is their lifestyle of simplicity, poverty and service to those in need while living a life focused on prayer.”

Born: San Angelo, Texas Reared: Hopkinsville, Ky.; San Antonio, Texas
“I graduated in June from John Marshall High School in San Antonio, Texas.

I first felt called to religious life in the middle of my freshman year in high school. I have not decided on whether I am called to priesthood or to be a religious brother.

The emphasis the Capuchins put on prayer in their daily schedule while still ministering to those in need is what drew me to the order.”