Miguel Perez didn’t plan on being where he is today. Now 30 and in his sixth year as a seminarian with the Companions of the Cross, Perez is serving as a seminarian intern at St. Maurice this year. But Perez had once seen his life going in a very different direction.
He grew up in Texas and didn’t know much about the Catholic faith he was born into. But he did want something.
“I knew that I wanted to be successful, to get a good job and a good family,” Perez said.
That led him to study engineering at Texas A&M University. It was after his first year and during a low point in his life that Perez was invited to a retreat. It was at that retreat that he encountered the personal love of Jesus for the first time in his life.
“I fell in love with my faith,” Perez said.
It was that moment that eventually led him to his ‘home’ with the Companions of the Cross.
After his first year at Assumption Farm (a year of formation), two years of philosophy and two years of theology, Perez is now at St. Maurice.
His time as an intern is designed to be a year of preparation. Throughout this year, Perez shadows both Fr. Tim and Fr. Lawrence in their everyday lives. He follows them around as they help prepare children for their sacraments by giving talks and meeting with their parents.
In his first semester, Perez was in charge of the small groups for the That Man Is You (TMIY) men’s program at St. Maurice. This semester, he has been on the leadership team helping to organize the weekly Alpha program.
Both have been fortunate experiences for Perez. Being able to journey with people and see them grow in relationship with the Lord has been “quite an experience.”
But, he also helps out with the many administrative tasks of being a priest. That means attending a lot of meetings.
“You’re learning a lot about how to administer a parish as a pastor and building a team around you that supports you and carries the same vision,” Perez said.
The parishioners here do that.
“Just to see the parishioners rally around the pastors really communicates to me as an intern that this is a family, St. Maurice is a family,” Perez said.
Just to see the parishioners rally around the pastors really communicates to me as an intern that this is a family, St. Maurice is a family.
While he has learned a lot and had many experiences, one stands out from the year so far.
Christmas. It was during that time he got to see everyone come together in a packed church and all the opportunities available to evangelize in the parish.
But at the end of the day, one thing stands out.
“The people are so loving here, it’s incredible,” Perez said.