"Our Lord Jesus Christ has touched my heart and has called me to follow him. Following Him looks different for every one of us, but the finish line is the same."

Mr. Gerardo Perez Roblero

Our Lord Jesus Christ has touched my heart and has called me to follow him. Following Him looks different for every one of us, but the finish line is the same. He wants us to be holy and united to Him for eternity in heaven. 

I come from a large family and it was my grandparents who instilled the faith in me. Angela, my grandmother, was a very pious and devout Catholic women. Thanks be to God, her prayers and Christian example impacted everyone in the family tree to some extent. I would not be the man I am today except for all the prayers and advice that she gave me.

Even though I had a strong family foundation, I went astray for many years in my late teens and early twenties. Despite the facts that I knew the teaching of the Church, had a close experience with God, and had great role models, I rejected God’s grace and message that he had prepared for me since I was in my mothers womb. 

After I graduated from college I was depressed, anxious and unhealthy. My heart felt empty and I was tired of trying to fill it with what the world had to offer. I recognized my brokenness and sought help. God slowly started to pull me back into his loving embrace. By His grace, once I started to put my life in order my mind started to clear up. I understood what many saints meant by, “Sin darkens the intellect.” 

I started to fall in love with and thirst for Jesus. I began to pray more frequently, do more penance and acts of charity, and spread the Good News. The Lord eventually led me to find the Traditional Latin Mass where I realized the importance of learning my faith and how to be reverent towards God. 

We have all gone through trials in life pondering, “why me Lord?” I have come to the realization that God permitted certain “evil” things to happen to me because He was preparing me to turn it into something good, just like Joseph recognized in the book of Genesis 50:19-20. “And he answered them: Fear not: can we resist the will of God? You thought evil against me: but God turned it into good, that he might exalt me, as at present you see, and might save many people.”

Fr. Andersen was a great role model of what a priest seeking holiness should be like. God was able to show me through him, and other priests, that the priestly vocation is a possibility for me. I do not want to live a life thinking, “What if I was meant to be a priest?” The time is now for me to fully discern and surrender to our Lord. I am very grateful to God, the Archdiocese of Portland, and my family for this opportunity to discern the priestly vocation. Please pray for me to be able to discern God’s will. May God bless you all.