Michael J. Wegenka, S.J., was born in Midland, Michigan, but considers Katy,
Texas, his hometown. The youngest of four children, he became intrigued by the
priesthood through his experience attending Catholic grade school and as a
student at Strake Jesuit College Preparatory in Houston, where he was impressed
by the Jesuits working there. Invited to dinners with Jesuit novices, Michael
was inspired to start thinking about a vocation to the Society during his
junior year. He entered the novitiate in Grand Coteau, Louisiana, directly out
of high school in 2005. As a novice, he worked with the Franciscan sisters at
Casa de Los Pobres, a community center and shelter in Tijuana, Mexico. After
the novitiate, Michael completed a bachelor’s degree in English literature and
philosophy at Fordham University and also taught confirmation classes at St.
Martin of Tours Parish in the Bronx, New York. For the next three years, he
taught theology and American and British literature in both the Girls and Boys
Divisions of Regis Jesuit High School in Aurora, Colorado. In addition, he
coached the boys’ and girls’ cross-country teams, was involved in the vocations
club and helped lead retreats. In 2014, he was missioned to the Boston College
School of Theology and Ministry, where he earned a Master of Divinity degree
and worked as a deacon at Boston University’s Catholic Center. Michael is
completing his theological studies at the Catholic University of America in
Washington, D.C., and will receive a Licentiate in Sacred Theology this winter.
Over the course of his formation, he has had the opportunity to study Spanish
in Peru, attend World Youth Day in Poland and work with the Jesuits in
Kyrgyzstan. Michael will celebrate Masses of Thanksgiving at St. Francis Xavier
(College) Church in St. Louis and at his parents’ parish, St. Bartholomew the
Apostle Catholic Church in Katy, Texas. After ordination, he will be assigned
to St. Charles Borromeo Parish in Grand Coteau, Louisiana. (USA Central and Southern Province)
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Sioux Spiritual Center
The Sioux Spiritual Center, nestled amid the hills of western South Dakota, is the heart of the Diocese of Rapid City’s efforts to develop native clergy and leadership on the reservations.