Press launch from Saint Leo College:
Dec. 15, 2020
The phrase “catholic” with a lowercase C means “common” or “inclusive.” And that’s a part of the objectives of the Rev. Randall Meissen, college chaplain, for Saint Leo College: to be open and welcoming to all. Meissen just lately joined the college and leads the College Ministry crew.
“Because the college chaplain, I am very acutely aware of serving two segments of the college,” Meissen stated. “One aspect is the necessary responsibility that’s ministerial sacramental life, and supporting the religious wants of our vibrant neighborhood. The opposite is the openness and receptivity to the entire college. I am not right here solely to say Mass and listen to Confession. I am additionally right here to assist the broader college—a pluralistic, multi-faith neighborhood.”
Meissen is a member of the non secular order, the Legion of Christ, and was ordained as a priest in 2014.
Previous to coming to Saint Leo College, he served as sacramental affiliate at Our Savior Parish and the College of Southern California Caruso Catholic Heart in Los Angeles. He is also a doctoral candidate within the historical past division of USC.
Meissen earned his Bachelor of Arts diploma in biology and classics in 2003 from Rice College in Houston, Texas. He earned a bachelor’s diploma in philosophy in 2008 and in theology in 2014 from the Pontifical Athenaeum Regina Apostolorum, Rome, Italy. In 2012, he earned a grasp’s diploma in Latin from the College of Florida and in 2016 a Grasp of Arts in historical past from USC.
He stated he’s “keen to make use of what I realized at USC in an effort to assist enrich the excellent choices at Saint Leo College in concord along with your time-honored Benedictine legacy.”
Making connections with college students is necessary to Meissen. “I wish to be a companion within the dialogue; whatever the religion or lack of religion, a pupil will go away realizing a bit extra—a bit extra about their very own beliefs and about Catholic custom and historical past,” he stated.
Proper now, connections are being made via Zoom and a few in-person, socially distanced occasions. Meissen has been celebrating the coed Mass at 7 p.m. on Sundays within the Saint Leo Abbey Church, and he appears to be like ahead to when the entire neighborhood will have the ability to collect collectively in the identical place.
College Ministry has sponsored occasions corresponding to an outside film in the course of the fall. “It is nothing notably non secular,” Meissen stated. “We merely get collectively and have enjoyable. We stay our religious mission wherever we’re. Spirituality is one thing that permeates wherever we’re—after we share meals, after we sit round a campfire, after we go to sporting occasions.”
Saint Leo college students have proven nice curiosity to find out what College Ministry is all about, he stated. College students deliver their very own views to the college, Meissen stated. “However right here, they are going to begin to hear new concepts and see the range and variety of individuals. They study ‘my hometown parish is not the one place on the planet. There are different folks my age who stay their religion authentically however in a special type.'”
Meissen is from Salisbury, MO, and his dad and mom and grandmother reside within the rural neighborhood, together with his grandmother being the oldest member of their parish. The oldest of 4 boys, Meissen was in a position to baptize his nieces and nephew. “That may be a nice reward,” he stated of the expertise.
Father Randall is also a printed creator, having written Dwelling Miracles: The Religious Sons of John Paul the Nice. So it isn’t shocking that his favourite saint is John Paul II.
“They are saying John Paul II was the only human being who was seen probably the most in-person by actual folks,” Meissen stated. “I used to be a type of folks.”
He was on a pilgrimage in 2000 and was in Rome on the feast of Corpus Christi, and the observance contains an outside Mass and procession.
“I got here from a small farming neighborhood in central Missouri and attended a small, rural parish,” Meissen stated. “In school, my eyes have been opened that being Catholic is not simply belonging to your native church. You are related to this complete world that’s an intersection of wealthy cultural custom and different religious practices. We’re all part of one thing a lot bigger than ourselves.”
The Corpus Christi procession in Rome emphasised that bigger perspective for Meissen as he noticed 1000’s of individuals, holding candles, and watching as Pope John Paul II, bishops, and clergymen glided by in procession with the Eucharist displayed in adoration. “To see John Paul II up shut,” Meissen stated, “It was exceptional. He had a capability to create a private expertise for hundreds of thousands of individuals—even the school pupil from the middle-of-nowhere Missouri.”
As a part of what Catholics think about the “John Paul II era,” Meissen stated he was conscious of the decision for younger folks to take an lively position as religion leaders amongst their school friends. “My involvement on the coed management crew for my Catholic campus ministry at Rice College was key to my very own resolution to dedicate my life to religious service of my sisters and brothers by turning into a priest,” Meissen wrote in his utility letter.
Now, the brand new college chaplain is devoted to serving and nurturing the religious wants of Saint Leo College’s college students, school, and workers.
For details about College Ministry, name (352) 588-8331 or e mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
This press launch was produced by Saint Leo College. The views expressed listed here are the creator’s personal.