Andreas Davison Home Parish: St. Mary Star of the Sea, Beverly Home Country: Germany Seminary: St. John’s Seminary, Brighton High School: High School in Germany Pilot photo/Gregory L. Tracy
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When was the first time you thought of priesthood?
When I was about 13 or 14 years old. After a confession a priest asked me if I was thinking of becoming a priest. A priest friend of the family spent a month at my house during cancer treatment. He was a great example for me.
What were major Catholic activities you participated in prior to the seminary?
World Youth Day in Cologne, Germany. Seminary retreat. 12 years in a religious congregation.
What is your favorite Scripture passage? Why?
It is hard to choose just one. The Gospel of John is special to me. If I need to pick one it might be Luke 23,34 “Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.” To teach with the word and by one’s own example is for me the first task of the priest after celebrating the sacraments.
Who influenced/inspired you to priesthood?
Many good priests (Pope John Paul II above all!) The great need of a good priest inspired me to think on myself being a priest.
What would you say to a young man who thinks he may have a vocation?
To increase his prayer life and to go to Mass more frequently. To pray in front of the Tabernacle.
Please tell us, what are some of the most important parts of discernment?
To trust in God and in His plan for us. If God calls someone, He also gives that person the grace to accomplish the task. See the prophets in the Old Testament.
What activities would you recommend in order to foster a culture of vocations.
To cultivate good families. To ask young people to consider vocation. To organize activities with (male) altar servers. If the priest is not convinced of his vocation and merely sees it as a job no one will feel attracted to it in his parish.
What influence (if any) has Pope John Paul II had on your vocation?
A great one. I remember him since I was 10. I consider myself part of the John Paul II generation.
How did you come to know Jesus Christ?
Through my mom when I was a boy, then at school and in the Church. Jesus was (and is )my best friend.
What were the spiritual events or activities that
helped you develop and shape your personal
relationship with Christ and His Church?
To get to know others with the same calling. Spiritual exercises, etc.
What are some of your favorite and most important spiritual readings/books/passages?
The Gospels. (First and most important) Thomas Kempis “Imitation of Christ” Readings from John Paul II and Benedict XVI.
Through the cardinal, God is calling you
personally to help rebuild His Church. How
must the priest respond to this mandate today?
Only holy priests can change the world. Only holy priests can show the love of Christ. To be a priest is not a job from Monday to Friday from 8 to 5. It is an ontological charge (it means we are different) after the ordination. It is not what we do, but what we are.
How does the Priest best follow in the footsteps
of the apostles?
One hundred percent generosity 100 percent love to Christ and the souls. In German we have the word “begeistern” which means inspired, to be enthusiastic about something. We need to be “begeistert” and in love with Christ in order to follow His call.
“Do not be afraid, Do not be afraid, Do not be afraid, Do not be afraid.” John Paul II during one of his trips to the United States said, “To be called to the priesthood is a gift to the one called, to his family, to the Church. The calling is a big “YES” from God in front of our small no’s.”
The Pilot, in cooperation with the Office of Vocations, is publishing a series of brief profiles of the men preparing for the priesthood in the Archdiocese of Boston. For other profiles or if you think God may be calling you to a vocation to the priesthood or religious life, visit the Vocations Office Web site at www.VocationsBoston.org.