Fr. Travis Myrheim
PRINCE ALBERT, SASK. – The bishop of Prince Albert is responding to what he sees as a growing spiritual revival in Western Canada by opening a house of discernment for men considering a priestly vocation.
"We would almost have the impression that we are living in a time of spiritual revival, and of an openness among our youth to respond to the call to priesthood," said Bishop Albert Thevenot.
To respond to this need, Thevenot will open St. Andre Bessette Discernment House this fall to welcome young people to pray, reflect and discern with others, what possibilities their baptismal call gives them.
The house will be a residence where young men can experience firsthand a lifestyle actively open to the Holy Spirit.
Thevenot said many vocations come from people in their late 20s and early 30s. Today, vocations are also coming from young men at an earlier age. People talk more openly about religion and the importance of priestly vocations and the Church. Local men are answering the call to priesthood.
Prince Albert currently has six seminarians – one from El Salvador and five from within the diocese.
Thevenot has named Father Travis Myrheim director of St. Andre Bessette House.
Myrheim will be accompanied by a team of fellow priests and lay people to help give formation programs.
Myrheim said being a high school chaplain for the past four years gives him an advantage. "This will definitely encourage students to drop in. Jesus calls people by name through personal relationships. Being at St. Mary's (High School), I can do that."
Young people, both men and women, will be invited to share their faith. There will be yearly gatherings, "come and see" weekends, monthly and weekly activities, retreats, game nights and movie nights.
Myrheim sees his role as "not to tell people what they should do, but to help them listen to God in their life and to guide them, to be their mentor, to help them in their life decision."
Residents will be expected to participate as much as possible in the spiritual life, community life and service of the Church as each is able – Morning Prayer, Mass, spiritual direction and other activities.
Thevenot said that naming the discernment house after St. Andre Bessette, the first male Canadian saint, will provide an example of a life of holiness.
"He was a humble servant to all people, helped them have a deep faith in Christ and be a people of prayer."