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Our Seminarians

Our Seminarians > Dan McHale

Dan McHale

My vocation story began in the fall semester of my junior year at Mount Saint Mary College in Newburgh, New York.  I was then going through a period of my life where the strong Catholic faith of my youth was no longer a priority for me.  Early one weekday morning, while in bed, I heard a voice out of the blue that told me to go to Mass.  I listened to this prompting and went to the campus chapel that day.  I remember standing there questioning my sanity as Mass began.  Then it hit me, like a bolt of lightning: "You are a priest forever, in the line of Melchizedek."  The Responsorial Psalm that day made me ask myself the question for the first time: "Am I supposed to be a priest?"  Shaken, I called Fr. Winston Bath, my longtime parish priest at St. Mary's Church (now Holy Trinity Parish) in Hudson who put me in touch with the Vocations Office for the Diocese of Albany.  However, I soon thereafter pushed the call out of my mind for the better part of the next decade.  I spent that time earning a Master's degree in history at the University at Albany, and then teaching courses at Mount Saint Mary College and SUNY New Paltz for ten years.  A health crisis in 2014 drew me back into serious discernment for the priesthood, and in 2015 I decided to apply for seminary study.  After serving a very fruitful and faith-filled pastoral year assignment at Mater Christi Parish in suburban Albany, I'm currently pursuing my vocation for the Lord at Pope St. John XXIII National Seminary in Weston, Massachusetts, where I'm in the First Theology class. 

"The everlasting God has, in his wisdom, foreseen from eternity the cross he now presents to you as a gift from his inmost heart.  He has blessed it with his holy name, anointed it with his consolation, taken one glance at you and your courage, and then sent it to you from Heaven, a special greeting from God to you, an alms of the all-merciful love of God"—St. Francis de Sales


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