If there is one thing that I have learned over the past few months, it is that some people are slowly starting to notice that there have been a lot of changes in the way that I do things. My daily Examiner column has taken on far more religious content and far less political content. It isn't that I have lost interest in the political world (that is what my degree is in, after all, so I have an abiding personal interest in, and a certain enjoyment of, politics), but there is a genuine realization that now, my personal views could be wrongly taken for the views of the Church at large.
I don't say all that with a sense of trepidation, lest anyone think that might be the case, but instead with an understanding that my journey of formation is about to enter a new phase. Candidacy means that the Church will recognize publicly, for the first time, that there is a strong possibility that I may be ordained. It means that I will be a "man of the Church," and may be seen as such by some already.
Perhaps most important of all, though, I see a change in myself, one that I believe comes from the Holy Spirit. I am increasingly comfortable that the Holy Spirit has placed me where I now find myself, and even though I don't yet know what ministries I will have if I am ordained, I am confident that if the Lord allows me to be ordained, that he will give me the gifts that I need to carry out what I am called to do, if he hasn't already.
Most of all, though, myself and the men of our formation class need your prayers. Remember us as you remember your pastor, and all the clergy. I know that so many of my brother Aspirants are thankful for all the prayers they can get. I know that I am.