Friday, October 31, 2014

Additional Photos from Recent Mount Angel Seminary Diaconate Ordination

In an earlier post, MAS Journalism published a story and photos by Phillip J. Shifflet on the recent diaconate ordination. These additional photos by Shifflet offer more views into the events of that day:

Brother James Bartos, OSB, a permanent deacon, proclaims the Gospel.

Most Reverend Peter Brown, CSsR, Bishop of Samoa-Pago Pago, was also present for the celebration.

Archbishop Sample lays hands on Michael Ritter of the Diocese of Sacramento.

The newly-ordained deacons exchange the Kiss of Peace with their classmates who were ordained this past summer.

Archbishop Sample celebrates the Liturgy of the Eucharist, surrounded by the newly ordained deacons and concelebrating priests.

Reverend Monsignor Joseph Betschart, President-Rector of Mount Angel Seminary; Michael Ritter of the Diocese of Sacramento; Most Reverend Alexander K. Sample, Archbishop of Portland in Oregon; Reverend Francisco Hernandez, Director of Vocations for the Diocese of Sacramento; and Jose Victor Gutierrez de Anda of the Diocese of Sacramento.

Archbishop Sample with Brother Charles Nawodylo, OCD; Very Reverend Stephen Watson, OCD, Provincial for the Carmelites; and Brother Peter Mary Vecellio.

Voces Fidei, an a capella singing group of MAS seminarians, in traditional Samoan garb with Pio Afu of the Diocese of Samoa-Pago Pago.  Voces Fidei sang a post communion song in Samoan and consists of Stephen Cieslak of the Archdiocese of Portland, Gregory Snyder of the Archdiocese of Seattle, Frank Villanueva of the Diocese of Honolulu, Phillip Shifflet of the Diocese of Orange, and John Hesla of the Archdiocese of Portland.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Six Men Ordained to the Diaconate at MAS

story and photos by Phillip J. Shifflet

On Saturday, October 11, in the Abbey Church at Mount Angel Seminary, the Most Reverend Alexander K. Sample, Archbishop of Portland in Oregon, ordained six men to the diaconate. Most Reverend Peter Brown, CSsR, Bishop of Samoa-Pago Pago, was also present for the celebration as were Very Reverend Stephen Watson, OCD, Provincial for the Carmelites and Right Reverend Gregory Duerr, OSB, Abbot of Mount Angel Abbey.

Ordained deacons were Brother John Paul Le, OSB, of Mount Angel Abbey; Brother Peter Mary Vecellio, OCD, and Brother Charles Nawodylo, OCD, of the Discalced Carmelite Province of St. Joseph; Pio Afu of the Diocese of Samoa-Pago Pago; and Jose “Victor” Gutierrez de Anda and Michael Ritter of the Diocese of Sacramento.

Archbishop Sample preached on the text from the Gospel of St. Matthew: “Can you drink the chalice I am going to drink?” During last year’s diaconate ordination, he reflected on the promise of celibacy; this year, he reflected on the promise of obedience. He described obedience as both submitting our will to an authority and giving ourselves to another. “We trust that somehow God’s will is made known to us through our superiors,” he said. “Even if we don’t understand it, even if we don’t like it, and even when our superiors make a mistake.” The Archbishop reminded us that obedience gives us total freedom to serve God and his people.

Archbishop Sample preaches on the priestly promise of obedience.

In addition to their studies and other duties at the seminary, the newly-ordained deacons also serve in local parishes on the weekends where they will serve at Mass and preach. They may also be asked to assist with baptisms, marriages, funerals, and other pastoral services.

Br. John Paul and Br. Charles will spend their weekends serving at St. Mary in Mount Angel; Br. Peter Mary has been assigned to St. Therese in Portland; Deacon Pio will spend his weekends at Resurrection in Tualatin; Deacon Victor will serve at Queen of Peace in Salem; and Deacon Michael, who graduated from MAS last May, will return to the Diocese of Sacramento for his pastoral work.

Archbishop Sample lays hands on Brother John Paul Le, OSB,
of Mount Angel Abbey

The newly ordained deacons (front) with (back, from left to right) Most Reverend Peter Brown, CSsR, Bishop of Samoa-Pago Pago; Most Reverend Alexander K. Sample, Archbishop of Portland in Oregon; Right Reverend Gregory Duerr, OSB, Abbot of Mount Angel Abbey; and Reverend Monsignor Joseph Betscharct, President-Rector of Mount Angel Seminary.

Mount Angel Seminary, established by pioneer monks, began forming men for the priesthood in 1889.  MAS is the oldest and largest seminary in the Western United States, and the only seminary in the West that offers both a college and a graduate school of theology.

This year, MAS celebrates its 125th anniversary. Since its inception, it has formed thousands of priests with sound philosophical and theological studies for service to the people of God in nearly 100 dioceses and religious communities across the country and around the world.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Guardians Soccer Defeated by PCC

by Sister Hilda Kleiman, OSB

On a day in which the weather forecast included rain and high-wind warnings, the MAS Guardians soccer team gathered on their home field to face the Portland Community College Panthers.  The Guardian lost 1-2.

In the first half, the Panthers made many attempts to score but missed the mark with the ball flying over or to one side of the goal.  Goalie Stephen Cieslak of the Archdiocese of Portland also made several saves.  The Panthers scored their first goal with less than five minutes in the first half.

After several missed goals in a row, the goal for the Guardians was scored by Andres Guerra of the Diocese of Orange in the second half.  The Panthers followed with their second goal to gain the lead.

The second half of the game also included several fouls, one of which resulted in a yellow card for the Panthers.

Carl Sisolak Takes Journalism

by Garrett McGowan

Carl Sisolak from the Archdiocese of Seattle is taking journalism this year.  This is Sisolak's third year on the hilltop, and he is looking to improve his writing skills.  He hopes that by taking the journalism class he will learn to become a better writer.  In addition to becoming a better writer, Sisolak also wants to get back into photography.

Carl Sisolak

Sisolak grew up in New Jersey.  When he was a child he received his first camera.  As a child he would take various pictures.  Last year on the hilltop he took a class in photography.  He sees journalism as a continuation of the photography class. This was another motivation to take the class.  Taking pictures brings back happy childhood memories for Sisolak.

Along with learning to become a better writer and photographer, Sisolak wants to learn the art of conversation. He wants to meet the new seminarians here on the hilltop and get to know their stories, along with getting to know those from previous years better.  Sisolak hopes that through journalism he will be able to cover new stories and make new connections with the seminarians.

Sisolak would like to cover stories on the hilltop involving different events.  Some of these events are the concerts the monks at the abbey host every year.  Sisolak said that many of the seminarians are not aware of these concerts.  By posting these concerts events on the blog, Sisolak can make people aware of what is going on.

Sisolak would also like the opportunity to interview such as Dr. Leamy to find out more about her new class.  Sisolak wants to cover all these stories to add them to the journalism blog.  In doing so he can make seminarians aware of events and new classes taking place on the hilltop and help people know more about what is going on in the community.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Huong Dinh Joins the MAS Journalism Team

by Carl Sisolak

Huong Dinh, an international student from Vietnam studying for the Diocese of Oakland, said during our interview that he wanted to learn to speak English better by being a journalist. Dinh said that English was his second language and it was good practice to learn his language skills.  Dinh said that he is also seeking to improve his writing skills.


Although this is his first year as a journalism student and third year as a college student at Mount Angel Seminary, Dinh already has some good ideas as to which writing tools would make for a successful journalist. Dinh said that with a story you should try to make sure you have all the facts so you can get the full picture of what is going on that relates to your story.  Dinh said that some of the skills of a good journalist include how to get information by making your interviewee comfortable with being asked questions and by asking the right questions.

Dinh asked a number of questions about the reporter, showing a few of the skills that a good journalist would like to have in his journalism toolbox.

In addition, Dinh also said there are several good ways to find a great lead for news stories and mentioned photography.  He suggests that you write about things you like to write about. He also mentioned that it is good to check with the formation directors and your sources to see if it is okay to interview them before you do so.  Photography is one of Dinh's hobbies that will also benefit his journalism work.

Dinh said he would like to work at writing more stories about our cultural events such as those put on by our Hispanic, Filipino, and Samoan communities.  One of those events for the Hispanic community in December is a celebration of the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe.

Dinh plays for several athletic teams for Mount Angel, most notably volleyball and soccer.  Dinh said he will also be looking to pursue some stories about the players and games played.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Greg Snyder Joins MAS Journalism

by Huong Dinh

Greg Snyder hopes that journalism will be the place where he can get better ideas on different topics and learn different ways to write an article. Greg Snyder is in his senior year of college and comes from the Archdiocese of Seattle.

Greg Snyder

He compares different journalistic styles to the kinds of clothes that a person would wear to different events. Moreover, Snyder states that he is not good at writing in general, even though he knows writing is one of the best ways to communicate with people effectively.  He wants people to better understand what he writes, so he desires to improve his writing skills.

Another reason that he decided to take journalism is because the class will help him to do his capstone paper. A capstone is a research paper that the college-four students are required to write encompassing their four years of studies.

Snyder said this is the first time he has taken this course, and he has never attempted a journalistic approach to any story or event before. He said “good writing is as color to experience,” and it can make people have fun when they read.  He explained more that good writing could be seen like a human being with many emotions, colors and feelings, with different textures and tones. On the other hand, he explained, “bad writing is not enjoyable and not fun,” and it is like a robot which is either on or off, moving or not, and conveying much less of an experience.

Snyder explained his weakness in writing is not about getting information to write but knowing how to organize that information in paragraph or essay form that makes its content smooth and flow logically for the reader. He knows what works when he reads it, but he finds it hard to orchestrate that order himself.  He says he has no appreciable skill in writing.  He wants to practice and master every necessary skill to become a better writer, but if he cannot become a great writer, he will at least settle for just being better than when he started.

Snyder said if he has opportunity, he would like to write about individual seminarians’ vocation stories and share them with other people, especially young people who might consider the vocation of the priesthood. He said through these vocation stories, people would know the wonderful works of God in the lives of human beings. He explained that through better writing in the areas that he enjoys most, he could make a difference in encouraging youth to follow God in this way.

Furthermore, he likes the idea of writing about sports here on the hilltop, the history of monastery and its architecture, and the library and how they manage and protect the valuable and very old manuscripts in the library vault. Greg is hopeful about the skills he will learn and the opportunities that will come about to practice those skills.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Phillip Shifflet Adds His Writing and Photography to MAS Journalism

by Greg Snyder

New Journalism student Phillip Shifflet brings a unique flavor to MAS Journalism.  Shifflet promises to bring added flair to the hilltop with his colorful writing and photography skills.

Shifflet, now in his final year of philosophy studies, shared his goals for this semester's creative endeavor.  He is taking a directed study course that is more like the second semester journalism practicum that is done individually when the student has mastered the basics of journalistic writing.  He will be responsible for creating projects that he wants to work on.  He said, "My hope is to do some photojournalism projects" that highlight the visual over the writing.

Phillip Shifflet

Even though Shifflet has not taken any introductory class, his writing background serves as an adequate foundation.  He hopes to sharpen his photography skills.  He said, "My idea was to create a way to continue taking photographs and using them for a productive purpose.  I may not be using the camera on a daily basis, but it will certainly give me an opportunity to fulfill my desire to complete some journalistic projects as well as enjoy my camera purchase to productive ends.  Hopefully it will encourage me to work on my composition skill and become a better photographer."

There are many opportunities, both formal and informal, for him to hone that skill.  Phillip is most interested in the events taking place in the Abbey Church.  He mentioned that he will not be taking part in the monastic schola, the choir group that assists the monastic community, so he can have the opportunity to photograph many of those church events that deserve to be made known.  He said jokingly, "Since currently in my spiritual life I cannot bi-locate, I decided it would probably be a good idea to focus on taking pictures."

He also mentioned that over the semester he would be writing press releases that can be used by the development office or perhaps released for use in the Portland archdiocesan Catholic Sentinel.  He said, "The next press release I will be covering will be the diaconate ordination on October 11 . . . so I will have my notepad, my press badge, my camera as well as a tripod; it's going to be very official."

Phillip's experience with journalism and photography is a work in progress.  He explained that he worked for his high school newspaper.  He also said he took a photography class as senior: "[I] borrowed a film SLR camera from my uncle.  Our assignment was to take two rolls of pictures of various events, develop and turn them in.  Of those two rolls of film, all but two pictures were either so under or overexposed that I could only turn in two pictures out of the combined rolls."

Shifflet's photography is available on Flickr.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Garrett McGowan Joins MAS Journalism with the Hopes to Grow as a Writer

by Randy Hoang

Editor's Note: This is the first several interviews that will introduce our readers to this year's journalism students.

Garrett McGowan, a second year seminarian from the Diocese of Oakland, is currently taking journalism because he wants to more clearly articulate his thoughts and sharpen the dull edges of his writing skills.

Coming from two years of working for Harley-Davidson Motor Company (2006-2008) as a mechanic and later four years (2008-2012) with the Naval Armed Forces, the seminary is the first academic setting he has experienced after high school. McGowan does not describe himself as the academic type, but he said that journalism will be a good challenge for him to grow both in creativity with different styles of writing and in the discipline of meeting deadlines.

Another factor that was appealing for McGowan was the involvement of photography. He said he is excited to “jump in and explore photography.”

Garrett McGowan

In order to start, it would be a good idea that the journalist be able to relate and talk to people first, and that is definitely a trait that he has. McGowan said he finds himself picking up conversations with almost everyone who will allow the time. He would like to bring to the journalistic table this asset of listening to people's perspectives and stories. He especially wants to utilize the opportunity of being in journalism to get to know on a deeper level his acquaintances and what they do on and off the hilltop, as well as get a glimpse into the lives of those with whom he has yet to spark a conversation. 

McGowan said that on his occasional trips to the library, he has found himself gravitating toward autobiographies. Some of the men he has been reading about include Catholic motivational speaker Matthew Kelly, Catholic theologian Scott Hahn, and Sonny Barger, a founding member of the Oakland, California, U.S. chapter of the Hells Angels Motorcycle Club. These are all men he respects and would like to emulate in his style of writing.

Along with experience and passion about and for classic cars, especially1940s and 50s muscle cars, McGowan would like to know more about Father Theodore Lange’s role as State Chaplain for the Knights of Columbus of Oregon, especially his role in restoring a Studebaker Champion, a project which would benefit a nonprofit cause.

Two other people he wishes to cover in this semester for journalism are Byzantine-rite Hungarian seminarian Marton Maygar and Br. Andre Love’s restoration of the chapel located on the premise of the monastic cemetery.   

The passion McGowan has is exuded through his openness to venture and most notably his openness to challenge himself, to travel from the streets of Oakland into the depths of the those involved with the seminary community at Mount Angel which he calls home now.

Friday, October 10, 2014

MAS Guardians Take a Loss from RCC

by Sister Hilda Kleiman, OSB
photos by Michael Kelly and Sister Hilda Kleiman

Last Saturday afternoon, the MAS Guardians faced Rouge Community College in a soccer match resulting in a loss for the Guardians, 3-5.

The Guardians held off RCC until right before halftime when RCC scored their first goal.  RCC scored again shortly after the start of the second half.  RCC achieved their third goal when the ball bounced off the top of the goal and into the Guardians' net.

Felipe Villalobos of the Diocese of Orange runs to beat RCC to the ball in the first half of the game.  Photo by Sister Hilda Kleiman.

Goalkeeper and team captain Stephen Cieslak of the Archdiocese of Portland prevents a goal by RCC in the first half.
Photo by Sister Hilda Kleiman.

Tony Lopez of the Diocese of Yakima races against a RCC player in the second half.  Photo by Michael Kelley.

Fiacre Nduwayo of the Archdiocese of Portland beats his opponent to the ball in the second half.  Photo by Michael Kelly.

The first goal for the Guardians was scored by Joseph Nguyen, and the second goal was scored by Andres Guerra. Both men are from the Diocese of Orange.  Guerra is also serving as the coach for the Guardians.

Immediately before the start of the game, both teams observed a moment of silence in honor of Valentine Miller. Miller, his son Steve, and his grandsons helped with the improvements to the soccer field over the summer.  Steve owns Willamette Turf.  Tony Morris, who works for Mount Angel Abbey, also helped with the drainage.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

MAS Seminarians Celebrate the Memorial of the Korean Martyrs

by Phillip J. Shifflet

Saturday, September 20, was the memorial of Saint Andrew Kim Tae-gon, Priest, and Paul Chong Ha-sang and Companions, Martyrs.

The Korean community at Mount Angel Seminary gathered for Mass in the St. Anselm Chapel at 11 a.m. in commemoration of the Korean martyrs.  Later that day, they cooked a traditional Korean meal in celebration.

The Korean seminarians at Mount Angel Seminary gather outside of the chapel after Mass.  They are (from left to right) Cheeyoon Chun of of the Diocese of Orange, Tyler Johnson of the Archdiocese of Seattle, Brian Kim of the Diocese of Orange, and Val Park of the Archdiocese of Seattle.

Abbot Peter Eberle, OSB, was the celebrant for the 11 a.m. Mass in St. Anselm Chapel.  His homily included a brief history of the Korean martyrs.

Val Park, who was born in South Korea, proclaims the first reading in Korean.

Before dinner, the seminarians enjoyed a Korean green tea.

Dinner included marinated barbecued beef and barbecued pork belly.

The meal also consisted of a fried rice that was made with kimchi,
seaweed, and fried egg.

Brian Kim, Paul Grandi, Randy Hoang, Cheeyoon Chun, Tyler Johnson, Val Park, and Phillip Shifflet (not pictured) took part in the celebratory dinner
in honor of the Korean Martyrs.