The Catholic Diocese of Sacramento, California
Office of Vocations - 2110 Broadway - Sacramento, CA 95818 -

Category: vocations

Introducing the Melchizedek Project: Receive the Tools for Discernment

We are pleased to announce a new discernment program for young adult Catholic men, beginning this Fall: The Melchizedek Project! Free to all participants, the program provides resources to deepen one’s vocational discernment. Men will meet to pray about their lives, listen for God’s voice, and get serious about answering God’s call. Using Fr. Brett Brannen’s To Save a Thousand Souls as a guide, participants will be able to ask themselves and discuss: Am I willing to follow Christ no matter what the cost, what the call? Will I choose to trust His will for me, and courageously go where He leads?

Catholic men ages 18-30 are invited to join us for “The Melchizedek Project.” This seven-session series will occur on every second Thursday of the month at St. Mel Parish in Fair Oaks from 7:00PM-8:30PM, beginning September 14, 2017. These sessions will be led by a priest and help you to gain the spiritual tools needed for discerning your vocation. 

There is no cost or obligation. To register, please contact our office at 916-733-0258 or Consider it! Consider priesthood! 

(Download the flyer for The Melchizedek Project here.)


Warren Smith and Fr. Chase invite you to the Collar Cup!

On July 1st at Papa Murphy Park in Sacramento, our priests and seminarians will meet each other on the soccer field in the first ever Collar Cup! While this author may have some bias (go sems!), the afternoon promises to be fun, faith-filled, and and exciting. Join special guest Fr. Chase Hilgenbrinck for Mass with a blessing of athletes. The priests vs. sems soccer match will follow. Stay after the Collar Cup match for a professional game featuring the Sacramento Republic and the San Antonio FC.

Check out the following videos from Sacramento Republic owner Warren Smith and Fr. Chase himself!

For tickets and more information, visit the Collar Cup website or call the Office of Vocations at 916-733-0258.

Introduction from Warren Smith:

Invitation from Fr. Chase Hilgenbrinck:



Sacramento Priestly Ordinations 2017

The soon-to-be-new priests prostrate on the floor of the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament. Photo by Cathy Joyce from The Catholic Herald magazine

The first weekend in June is always a joy in the Diocese of Sacramento. Summer approaches and classes have ended. The seminarians have returned home and are about to begin their summer assignments, whether that is parish work, hospital training, or language immersion in Mexico. The first weekend in June holds an even greater significance, however, for our Diocese: this is the weekend when traditionally new priests are ordained for service within the church of Sacramento after completing years of seminary formation, ready to serve the people of God.

This year was no different, seeing the ordination of three new priests for the Diocese of Sacramento by our bishop, the Most Reverend Jaime Soto: Fr. Joshua Sia, Fr. Edgardo Garcia, and Fr. Andrés Emmanuelli. Our new priests have diverse origins, ranging from the Philippines, Mexico, and Venezuela, coming with experiences that will no doubt serve them well as they embark on their ministry within the Diocese.

Ordination weekend is a special time for the seminarians, as we get to see the fruits of many years of prayer and work, getting to accompany our brothers as they prostrate themselves on the floor of the cathedral, dedicating their lives to God through service to His Church in Sacramento. Speaking from a personal perspective, each ordination I have attended has gained more poignancy for my own vocational journey. Seeing friends that I really know, brothers I have journeyed with throughout their years of seminary formation, through all the blessings and challenges,  strengthens my own sense of vocation and encourages me to move forward. If you ever have a chance to attend a priestly ordination, especially if you are discerning a call to the priesthood, go! You won’t regret it! Please continue to pray for your seminarians and priests, and pray especially for an increase in vocations to the priesthood here in Sacramento. Your prayers make a difference!

At the end of the ordination Mass, the following assignments were announced for our new priests: Fr. Emmanuelli has been assigned as Parochial Vicar of St. Vincent Ferrer Parish in Vallejo, Fr. Garcia has been assigned as Parochial Vicar Good Shepherd Parish in Elk Grove, and Fr. Sia has been assigned as Parochial Vicar of St. James Parish in Davis.

Our Lady of Guadalupe, pray for us!

In Christ,


The following gallery photos are courtesy of Shannon Blecha, parishioner of St. Mary’s Church in Sacramento. Click on the image to see the next photo.


Silence and Discernment

Mount Angel Seminary after our recent silent retreat

The new year is upon us, classes are starting, and resolutions are being made. For many seminarians, including those in Sacramento, this time of year has a different meaning as well: retreat season. Across the country, many seminaries, including Mount Angel Seminary in Oregon and Saint Patrick’s in Menlo Park, the two seminaries utilized by the Diocese of Sacramento, hold an annual retreat, often in silence, in order to provide some time for prayer, reflection, and finding God’s will in one’s life. Even those who are on their pastoral internship, a year long period of learning and living in a parish, return to their seminaries, as I returned to Mount Angel this past week. While a week-long retreat, especially in silence, is not always easy, if one allows it to be, it is fruitful and brings many blessings.

Silence and time for prayer is just as important for seminarians and priests as it is for anyone else, especially for those who are discerning a call to religious life. To hear God’s call, we should take some time to step back and simply “be” with God. This might mean attending a formal discernment retreat, which can be found by contacting your local Diocese (such as Sacramento’s Office of Vocations), going on a personal retreat at a local monastery or retreat house (such as the Abbey of New Clairvaux in Northern California), or if neither of those options are available to you now, then simply spending some time away from the constant bombardment of modern life, whether it be a hiking or camping trip, or some other experience in which you can spend some good quality time reflecting and praying, listening for the Lord. As one priest recently told me: look for quality over quantity. In other words, you don’t have to spend 14 days in total silence to hear God’s will, but you do have to make an honest effort, with the guidance of a good spiritual director, and then make a decision and move forward based on what you discern.

If you are discerning the priesthood or religious life, take that next step and spend some time away with God. Find a good spiritual director who can help you on the journey, and when the time comes, with good discernment, move forward towards the next phase.

In the meantime, keep an eye out for the ConsiderPriesthood team! Fr. Jovito, Vocations Director for the Diocese of Sacramento, and some seminarians will be visiting St. Patrick-St. Vincent High School in Vallejo and Crito Rey High School in Sacramento over the coming weeks.

Please continue to pray for all your Sacramento seminarians, and know that you remain in ours as well!


Talking Vocations at Christian Brothers High School!

Recently a group of seminarians, religious sisters, priests, and brothers ventured to Christian Brothers High School in Sacramento to promote vocations. This has been an ongoing effort to reach out to high school students in the Diocese of Sacramento: along with Christian Brothers, we have also visited Mercy High School up north, and plan on visiting Vallejo in the near future.

We had a wonderful time meeting all of the students, and they asked some terrific questions! Here are a few pictures from the event; click on the photo for a larger version.


Watch Inspiring Video

Archbishop Dolan ordains 5 priests to the Archdiocese of New York   Why Not?   God in the Streets of New York City   Deacon Mike reflects upon his vocation to the priesthood.