Men in Formation for the Diocese of Great Falls-Billings

Thomas Johnson
North American College
Rome, Italy
Jeremy Berka
Mt. Angel Seminary
Portland, OR
Randy Bebeau
Sacred Heart Seminary &
School of Theology

Hales Corners, WI
Thanh “Andy” Tran
Specialized Formation
Great Falls, MT

A note from Fr. Matt Solarz, Diocesan Director of Second Vocations

As we approach the season of Advent in a few short months, we begin to prepare for the coming of our Savior at Christmas. It’s appropriate, then, at this time of the year that we recognize our men in the seminaries, who are preparing to become Good Shepherds one day of the Church in Eastern Montana. 

To support them in their educational endeavors, and to ensure they have some additional financial support as they devote their lives to Christ, we are holding a Seminarian Christmas Gift drive in our diocese beginning this month. The vocations team is respectfully asking members of each parish to collect donations of gift cards (any amount), cards with well-wishes, and even boxes of treats to be sent to our men in formation before they leave for the holiday break. As a recent seminary graduate myself, I cannot express how additional gifts of support around the holidays helped me travel home or pay an extra bill as extra expenses loom. One particular year, I recall, it was only through the generosity of the local parishes and the Knights of Columbus that I could afford the airfare home from the seminary to meet my family for Christmas.

We prayerfully ask that each parish collect and mail (or drop off) these donations no later than November 20th. Once received, we will work with volunteers to sort your generous contributions and split them up among our four men in seminary formation. Let’s show our love to these men who are preparing to serve in ordained ministry. Please remember, that our seminarians are not allowed or able to work while they are devoting their time to religious formation and academic endeavors. Their small diocesan stipend only covers so much, and we have the opportunity to open our hearts and make a difference for them during a deeply spiritual time of the year.

Thank you all for your consideration, and may God bless you.   

Please send gifts no later than Nov. 15, 2023 to:

C/O Fr. Matt Solarz
St. Matthew’s Catholic Church
219 7th Street SE
Sidney, MT 59270