By Victor Manuel Patricio Silva, O.M.I.
What can I say about myself? I am an ordinary person like other people; a sinner striving to holiness. I am originally from Acapulco, Mexico. I grew up in a Catholic family of ten children who practiced their faith. My family was not perfect. We had our struggles and difficulties. Our faith helped us.
I grew up without much interest in consecrated or priestly life. In my mind, God did not have that plan for me. I did my sacraments of Eucharist and Confirmation. I participated in youth groups.
At age 15 I participated in a three-day retreat. It was there I could say, I had my first personal encounter with Jesus. My life had new meaning. At age 16 I decided to start my own youth group in my neighborhood. This led me to serve in youth groups for nine years.
I went to an Oblate vocation retreat to accompany one of the members of the youth group who had shown interest in becoming a priest. God used that retreat to call me also. I resisted that call. I had doubts, fears and uncertainties. In a prayerful discernment and in an act of faith, I dared to try. I said to myself: only a year, and if it is not for me, nothing will happen.
It has been nine years since I joined the Oblates. I cannot say everything has been rosy because every vocation has its struggles and battles. But when you love something, these circumstances take second place. Love is the key to my vocation. I know it is God who first loved me. I am only responding to this infinite love of God.
I am now doing my pastoral internship at Immaculate Heart of Mary Parish in Houston. This year, I will profess my perpetual vows in September, then the diaconate in November and priesthood ordination in May 2018, God willing.
The Missionary Oblates have as their mission, to serve the poor and most abandoned. Today’s world still needs people who serve the poor. I realize encountering the poor will help me to encounter Jesus. I ask for your prayers so that I may be a consecrated person who lives and transmits the hope and joy of the Gospel. God bless!