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Meet Our New Priests

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On Saturday, May 20, Archbishop Leonard P. Blair will ordain the following three men to the Holy Priesthood:  Reverend Mr. Glen Dmytryszyn, Reverend Mr. Eduar Gutiérrez Tovar and Reverend Mr. Eric Zuniga. Take a moment to find out why they want to become apostles of Jesus.

Reverend Mr. Glen Dmytryszyn

Why did you decide to become a priest?

I first thought of priesthood when I was about 15 years old. I saw how much the world needed Christ and I began to think how God could use my life in service to his Church. Throughout high school, this desire became stronger and stronger. I talked with my pastor about my vocation and immediately following high school, I applied to the Archdiocese and began seminary studies.

Who or what inspired you?

There are many people who inspired me along this path to priesthood. I think of the life of St. Pope John Paul II. He has been a constant model of priestly life for me. The story of his life, his faithfulness, and love of the Church has been a great inspiration to me. Many priests have also inspired me. Their dedication and love of the Lord gave me the necessary encouragement to take the first step and follow Christ in a more radical way.

As a priest, what would you like to accomplish?

I would like to accomplish the work of God in my priestly ministry, which is primarily the teaching of the Catholic faith to all people, celebrating the sacraments, and making Christ known and loved in all these moments. The Catholic priest has an incredible gift and responsibility to offer sacrifice to God, to pray on behalf of the people entrusted to his pastoral care, and to exercise an authentic pastoral charity. I look forward to this with great joy.

Where did you study? Was preparing for the priesthood difficult?

I completed my theological studies for the priesthood at St. John’s Seminary in Brighton, MA. I view time spent in the seminary as a privileged time to grow and foster friendship with Christ and also time to learn the awesome truths and mysteries of our faith and redemption. My time in the seminary was a very enjoyable experience, having the opportunity to make some great friendships, to travel, and most importantly to learn. I would not say it was difficult, but rather it was a challenge. A good challenge to grow in holiness and to be formed into the image of Christ the High Priest.

Talk about how your family may have impacted your decision to pursue the priesthood.

My family has been a constant support to me both before and after I entered the seminary. While initially hesitant about my decision, they have all grown to love and appreciate this great gift from God. I am thankful to my parents for passing on the Catholic faith to me as a child and for their support and love.

 

Reverend Mr. Eduar Gutiérrez Tovar

Why did you decide to become a priest?

Well, before answering this question I want to share a little bit about myself. When I was 11 years old, I wanted to help at San Antonio de Padua (my home parish in Tarqui-Huila, Colombia). For this reason, I joined the altar server group. During that time, I saw how my former pastor (Fr. Miguel Angel Trujillo Luna) worked with different groups, celebrated the sacraments, and offered his own life to God and to the people, and in my head, the idea to go to the seminary began. Later, when I finished my school (colegio), I entered the major seminary because I really love what being a priest means regarding the sacraments and what a priest gives for Christ, for the Church, and especially for the people. It has been an enormous blessing from God these years of formation and God willing a great blessing to do my best for the Archdioceses of Hartford.

Who or what inspired you?

I was inspired by Fr. Miguel Angel Luna Trujillo, who worked at my home parish very hard day by day hearing confessions and celebrating the Eucharist for the town every day. He celebrated the Eucharist in veredas (small villages around the town) so, I was impressed by his daily life.

As a priest, what would you like to accomplish?

As a priest, I want to be close to the people and offer them all that I have. I want to be a priest around the people and be available to them at any time. I would like to work with the youth ministry because they are the present and future of our Archdiocese. Also, I want to work with the elderly at the parish in which I get assigned and build a strong community (in Christ), which is my ultimate goal.

Where did you study? Was preparing for the priesthood difficult?

I attended Mount St. Mary’s Seminary in Emmitsburg, Maryland, the second oldest seminary in the country. Like everything in life, there were good moments but also difficult ones. But in general, I enjoyed my five years at the Mount, and I will be grateful my entire life for everything that they have done for me and what I have learned there.

Talk about how your family may have impacted your decision to pursue the priesthood.

My family has impacted my vocation in a very positive way, because they have always supported my vocation. I grew up in a very Catholic family, and I remember going to Mass on Sundays and praying the Rosary together at least twice a week. I have learned from them that my relationship with God is key in my daily life. My mother always said that does not matter what you do (study medicine, be a lawyer, etc.) as long as your relationship with God is the main key in life.

 

Reverend Mr. Eric Zuniga

Why did you decide to become a priest?

I decided to become a priest because life without God does not make sense. I no longer found joy in the things that the culture promoted as sources of happiness. Life is more than just having fun, things, and a higher social position. I always found joy and happiness in prayer. Even in the saddest moments of my life. I want to share the joy of having a loving God with others.

Who or what inspired you?

Various priests that came into my life were an impact in my discernment into the priesthood.

As a priest, what would you like to accomplish?

As a priest, I would like to help in the process of evangelizing our local communities. With a large number of people in the Archdiocese living a life without faith, hurts our society and nation. Our faith is a missionary one that demands us to spread the Good News to all mankind.

Where did you study? Was preparing for the priesthood difficult?

I did all my seminary education at Mount St. Mary in Emmitsburg, Maryland.

Six years of education and preparation for the priesthood was not easy. The formation a seminarian receives is intense and involves challenging our intellect, spiritual, human, and pastoral skills.

Talk about how your family may have impacted your decision to pursue the priesthood.

My family is an important part in my decision to pursuing the priesthood. My parents were the first to teach me the Love of God. They taught me how to pray and took me to Church every Sunday.

My father’s example has taught me the importance of fatherhood in a person’s life. My mother showed me to have patience and compassion with all people. My brother (Omar who is deceased) showed me that living for the common good and serving God is the most important thing to do in life.

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