Catholic priests are bountiful in the Strand family of Wisconsin. Luke and Jake are already ordained priests and Vincent is in formation with the Jesuits. This is a heartening story about how these young men felt drawn to the Gospel, outreach, and faith … and how each in their own way wrestled with and embraced their unique path to becoming priests and a Jesuit.
I love the honesty of the parents in talking about their children and their decisions as well as how they stress, “no we really are a normal family!” Society is so quick to think that any kind of call to faith or service or consecrated life or ordained life must somehow mean that there’s something fishy going on — dysfunctional family, out-of-touch with reality, unhealthy religious tendencies, or some other crazy aberration.
And imagine how their sister feels with three ordained brothers! While some have joked that that must mean she’s going to become a nun (she’s married, by the way), Theresa keeps it real saying, nothing has changed with her older brothers. “I think they swear more than I do,” she said. Yep, it’s definitely a normal family!
Check out the story by Carrie Antlfinger of the Associated Press that is making its way across the media — here’s her article at the Huffington Post.
We’d love to hear your comments about the story! What struck you as you were reading the story?
Marsha West July 26, 2012 at 10:43 am
Great story! Sure illustrates that God has a sense of humor! Who would have guessed that these brothers would all find themselves in such a similar place in their lives. May have been a “normal family,” but certainly not an “ordinary one” these days. So I want to know — did they not sit down at the dinner table regularly as a family (not ordinary these days)? Did they not go to church together as a family (not very ordinary these days)? Sounds like they had a very good family life — if not a particularly pietistic one. We need more families like this.
Sue Callahan July 26, 2012 at 11:18 am
How wonderful! I agree with the first comment, God certainly has a sense of humor and I can imagine His happiness as he watched each one accept the call. God bless that family and may we have many more like them! BTW, this story made my day sisters! Thanks for the link!
Kerri Leigh Power July 26, 2012 at 3:23 pm
I agree, great story, and I also noticed that the parents stressed their kids were normal, it’s probably something they’ve been asked about many times. I think religious life is a very unfamiliar choice for many people today, and the first thought might be that there is something dysfunctional going on. (Though if all three sons devoted their lives to making tons of money, I doubt anyone would question it.) Just goes to show, we all need to get to know more great nuns and priests and see that they’re as ‘normal’ as we think we are!