Seminarian Alexander Brown, who worked during high school as an apprentice blacksmith, is about to take a major step in forging his new life as a priest of the Diocese of Allentown.
Bishop Alfred Schlert will ordain him a Transitional Deacon – the final step before Ordination to the Priesthood – at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, May 21, at the Cathedral of St. Catharine of Siena.
Blacksmiths take standard pieces of steel, Brown says, and through a lot of work, and serious thought, and adjustments along the way, forge that metal into something useful and special.
So it is with our lives, he says, because Christ takes time and effort with each of us to fashion us into something we could not have become on our own.
Brown, 25, has been studying for the past seven years at St. Charles Borromeo Seminary, Philadelphia. He is the youngest of four children of Randolph Brown and Deirdre Sweeney-Brown of Nazareth, and is a member of Sacred Heart Parish, Bath.
It was near the end of his high school years (having been homeschooled for grades K-12) that Brown said he began thinking about the rest of his life. He was re-evaluating his original plan, he said, which was to get degrees in history and education, and to return to work for the historical society where he had his part-time blacksmithing job.
“I took a step back and asked, ‘Where is my heart?’ And it was my faith,” he said, leading to his decision to enter the seminary. “I fell in love with it immediately.”
Brown’s advice to someone thinking about pursuing a vocation to the Priesthood or religious life is this: “Acknowledge that God may have a plan for you. Give it a shot. Be open to the Lord.”
The Ordination will be livestreamed on AD Today and can be viewed by clicking the banner at the top of the home page. It also can be viewed live on the diocesan Facebook and YouTube channels. All are welcome to attend the Ordination in person.