Order of Preachers
Our New Novice Class
Loren, 30, was born in Vietnam before moving with his family to Kansas City, Missouri. He attended St. Andrew the Apostle Parish in Gladstone, Missouri.
Loren graduated from the University of Missouri-Kansas City with a degree in pre-med. He continued his medical studies at Michigan State University School of Osteopathic Medicine before hearing his call to the Dominicans.
Loren met the Dominicans when Fr. Andrew Carl Wisdom, O.P. and Fr. Andy McAlpin, O.P. visited the vocations group at Michigan State University. At the time, he never thought of applying for the Dominicans, but God clearly had other plans.
Jay, 40, hails from Louisville, Kentucky, and grew up attending St. Agnes Parish, which was run by the Passionist Fathers.
He has a bachelor’s degree in History from Bellarmine University and a master’s degree in Sports Administration from Ball State University. Jay has a wide variety of professional experience ranging from teaching in a Catholic grade school, coaching at the high school level, as well as working as an operations administrator in college athletics at Ball State University and Western Michigan University and for the PGA of America.
Jay met the Dominicans through the Lay Dominicans. While working in Michigan, Jay joined the Lay Dominican Grand Rapids Chapter. Later, as jobs changed and Jay moved back to his hometown of Louisville, Jay continued with the Lay Dominicans and joined the St Louis Bertrand Parish run by the Dominican Friars.
Jay is a lifelong sports fan. He also loves to read, travel, and tries to stay active through exercise.
Matt, 29, grew up in Michigan and attended the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor where he completed his degree in history, focusing on modern European history. After college, Matt started graduate studies in theology at SS. Cyril & Methodius Seminary in Orchard Lake, MI. He then went on to teach Church history at a Cristo Rey high school in Kansas City, MO.
He first met the Dominicans while studying at Michigan through the Dominican sisters who reside there.
In his free time Matt enjoys racquetball, hiking, and anything concerning history.
Jacob, 22, was born and raised in Michigan City, Indiana and attended Queen of All Saints Catholic Church where he was a lector and served on the parish pastoral council during his senior year of high school. While on the parish council, his pastor told him he thought he had a vocation to the priesthood, but it might take some time before he would come to realize it.
He attended Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) and graduated with a degree in Philosophy with minors in Chemistry and Mathematics. While at IUPUI, he was active in the classroom as a peer mentor, in Catholic student leadership affiliated with the campus, and a wide variety of activities on campus. He continued to wrestle with the question of a vocation to the priesthood, and is grateful to the Catholic community at IUPUI for providing an environment to uncover the call he felt to the Dominican life.
Jacob first encountered the Dominicans at the FOCUS SEEK conference in Orlando in January 2013. After meeting many different Dominicans, in a variety of different ministries, and phases of formation, he felt confident to take the next step. By January of the next year, God blessed him with the opportunity to accept the invitation to the 2014-2015 novitiate class.
In his spare time he enjoys cooking traditional, cultural food, particularly Indian, reading about the saints, and enjoying a good craft beer. He also likes to spend time with friends playing Euchre or Settlers of Catan.
Brandon, 25, grew up in South Bend, Indiana and attended Catholic schools through high school.
Brandon entered the Immaculate Heart of Mary Seminary at St. Mary’s University in Winona, Minnesota, after high school. He graduated from there with a degree in Philosophy and English Literature. Having ultimately decided that diocesan priesthood was not for him, he left the diocesan seminary, worked one year for a non-profit healthcare organization writing grants, and eventually began work on a master’s degree in Classics at the Catholic University of America.
He first met the Dominicans as a diocesan seminarian. A Dominican priest and member of the Central Province, Fr. Andrew Cyril Fabian, O.P., taught seminarians Logic, Ethics, and Metaphysics and incidentally introduced Brandon to St. Dominic and to Dominican spirituality. Brandon was very impressed with this Fr. Fabian; his example had a tremendous influence on him.
For fun, he likes to read fiction, play tennis, and talk. He is especially interested in studying Roman and Greek literature. In the past he has performed in, and directed plays; participated in organized debates; bicycled lakes and islands; and become intensely interested in French cooking.
Ben, 23, grew up in Andover, MN and attended St. Stephen’s parish in the Archdiocese of St Paul and Minneapolis. He has an older sister, two younger brothers, and a younger sister.
Ben attended Minnesota State University, Mankato and graduated with a degree in Mechanical Engineering. During his time there, he played on the baseball team and was involved in FOCUS (Fellowship of Catholic University Students) Student leadership. Starting Beginning his sophomore year, he led two bible studies and started to realize his desire to share his faith with others.
After graduation, Ben became a FOCUS missionary and worked with Varsity Catholic, the athlete outreach of FOCUS, at the University of Mary in Bismarck, ND. While there, he led a number of bible studies for the athletes on campus and met with them to help them grow in their relationship with God.
Ben first met the Dominicans when he was at the University of Missouri doing research during the summer between his junior and senior year of college. While getting to know them that summer at St. Thomas More Newman Center, he was drawn to the community life as well as the focus on study and opportunity to always continue learning. When he went to the Come and See weekend, he could see himself becoming great friends with the friars in formation.
As a former ball player, he enjoys playing all kinds of sports, especially baseball and enjoys coaching and using sports psychology principles to help guys people get more out of themselves. In his spare time, he enjoys reading and spending time with family and friends.
Michael, 23, grew up in New York City. He lived in Manhattan and attended Epiphany Parish.
Michael graduated from Villanova University in 2013 with a degree in Mathematics and minors in Theology and Classical Studies. After college, Michael joined the Dominican Volunteers USA (DVUSA) and was assigned to St. Paul Catholic Center, the Newman Center at Indiana University. At IU, Michael lived and worked with the five Dominican friars there and had the opportunity to learn about the Order of Preachers and their way of life. Having considered a vocation while in college, Michael decided to pursue it further. After much prayer and counsel from a few people he trusted, Michael knew that God wanted him to move forward with his vocation, and that vocation is to preach.
Michael enjoys spending time with people he cares about, and cares less about what particularly he’s doing and more about who he is doing them with. He enjoys a good conversation, and is always ready to have one.
Pierce, 22, grew up just outside of Indianapolis. He attended St. Pius X grade school and parish and attended Bishop Chatard High School.
He graduated from Indiana University–Bloomington with a degree in Sports Communication – Broadcast. As a student, he was heavily involved with IUSportCom , a student sports media web site for which he covered countless IU football and basketball games, as well as the student radio station (WIUX) and television station (IUSTV).
He met the Dominicans for the first time at the Indiana University Newman center. Pierce attributes his spiritual development to the friars at IU, their preaching, and their relationships with the students. He especially identified with the friars because their lives matched their preaching.
Pierce’s free time is best spent joking and relaxing with family and friends. He also spends ample time reading about, watching, and playing sports. At the end of the day, he enjoys a comfortable chair and a sizable book.