San Antonio Seminarians

These are the men studying to be priests here in the Archdiocese. They are from different places, with different stories, and in different levels of study. If you are discerning, their stories may help you on your journey. We hope you will pray for them as they continue walking the path God has laid out for them.

Deacon Rafael A. Lopez-Negroni

Level of Study: 4th Theology

Home Parish: St. Monica-Converse
Podcast: Seminarian Q&A: Deacon Rafael Lopez-Negroni

I was born in San Juan, Puerto Rico. The desire to be close to the Eucharist inspired me to discern the priesthood. It is my intent to bring Christ closer to people through active listening, accompaniment, and showing the true love and mercy of God to all who genuinely want to invite Christ into their hearts.

Deacon Ottmar Tovar

Level of Study: 4th Theology

Home Parish: St. Anthony Mary Claret-San Antonio
Podcast: Seminarian Q&A: Ottmar Tovar

I began to discover my vocation during my childhood in Mexico City, where I was inspired by the example of my first parish priest. The call remained and became clearer throughout the years, being later confirmed in the Shrine of Medjugorje through the loving intercession of Our Lady. I hope to be, by God’s grace and your prayers, a living reflection of Christ and an instrument of his mercy through the priestly ministry.

Deacon Rafael Becerra

Level of Study: 4th Theology

Home Parish: Our Lady of Perpetual Health-Selma
Podcast: Seminarian Q&A: Rafael Becerra

I am following Christ; he has called me. He has inspired me the example of my spiritual director, Fr. Salvador Zúñiga, who with his life gave me an example of authentically following Christ. He taught me that only God is enough.

Deacon Man Nguyen

Level of Study: Vocational Synthesis

Home Parish: Vietnamese Martyrs-San Antonio
Podcast: Seminarian Q&A: Man Nguyen

My vocation to the priesthood started with my two uncles who are priests. What I witnessed in their identity as priests was that they were full of bliss and generosity. The way they cared for their parishioners and their love for the ministry seemed to tremendously revitalize their identity as a priest. Seeing and witnessing their lives as priests has really made me, as I discern my own vocation to the priesthood, desire deeply to imitate my uncles in their own persona Christi. And to be like them in trusting in the Lord and seek to follow in the footsteps of Jesus Christ.

Robert Shelton

Level of Study: Internship

Home Parish: Our Lady of Guadalupe-Helotes
Podcast: Seminarian Q&A: Robert Shelton

My vocation was first inspired by the actions of the saints and martyrs throughout history. Their devotion to defending the Church and its people inspired me to serve. As a future priest, I am most looking forward to administering the sacraments and being there for people in their times of need.

Deacon Evan Wittig

Level of Study: Theology–Special Studies

Home Parish: Church of the Holy Spirit–San Antonio

After 41 years of married life, my wife Theresa passed away.  After 38 years as a Deacon, I am ready to serve God and His people as a Priest.  I heard God calling me, and here I am.

Luis De La Cruz

Level of Study: 3rdTheology

Home Parish: St. Leo the Great-San Antonio

I have always loved reading the Lives of the Saints. These people were not afraid to love God in whatever vocation they were called to. It was the saints and the people who were placed in my path that inspired me to pursue this vocation.

Guillermo Cruz

Level of Study: 3rd Theology

Home Parish: St. Gregory the Great-San Antonio
Podcast: Seminarian Q&A: Guillermo Cruz Hernández

My vocation was inspired by the exemplary lives of my pastors Fr. Alejandro Ledesma and Fr. Daniel Wittrock, who taught me the importance of working for others and sharing Christ through the sacraments. In addition, I found great inspiration for my vocation to the priesthood in the Catholic faith visible in my parents, relatives, and friends. I am looking forward to joining the priesthood, especially to preach the gospel of Christ‘s kingdom and to administer the sacraments of Reconciliation and Holy Eucharist.

Luis Horacio Gómez

Level of Study: 3rd Theology

Home Parish: Blessed Sacrament-San Antonio
Podcast: Seminarian Q&A: Luis Horacio Gómez

My vocation to the priestly life started when I’ve worked as an Accountant, I felt that God called me to serve the people in other ways, and the Priesthood has always been an option for me. Thanks to my spiritual director, Father Edwin Gomez, who has been accompanying me, I was able to listen carefully to the voice of God in my heart and say yes to His call. I’m so glad to have the opportunity to continue listening to the voice of God and His will for my life in the Archdiocese of San Antonio.

Edgar Hernández

Level of Study: 3rd Theology

Home Parish: St. Agnes-San Antonio
Podcast: Seminarian Q&A: Jose Edgar Hernández

Serving to church has made me happy since I was a child. The closeness to people and the dedication of the priests in their work motivates me to serve others with the same passion. God, my family, and my friends will always give me the energy to achieve my desire to be a priest.

Moses Castro

Level of Study: 2nd Theology

Home Parish: St. Andrew-Lytle
Podcast: Seminarian Q&A: Moses Castro

A continual breeze brought on by the Holy Spirit and a profound layering of grace in my life has led me to where I am today. I am grateful for the opportunity to discern a call to the priesthood with the desire only to fulfill God’s Holy Will in my life.

Erick Cruz

Level of Study: 2nd Theology

Home Parish: Holy Trinity-San Antonio
Podcast: Seminarian Q&A: Erick Cruz

My vocation was most inspired by the faithful witness of many priests that I have been blessed to have in my life … while growing up, at college, and during my time as a missionary. Through their examples of what it means to be a priest, I felt the unrest of wanting to pursue my vocation. If my vocation is to be a priest, then I wish nothing more than to be an instrument of God’s love and mercy to His people and to help those I minister to reach sanctity.

Prashanth Kumar

Level of Study: 1st Theology

Home Parish: St. Paul Catholic Church–San Antonio

Those hundreds of Priests and Religious nuns that were part of my parish and whom I would see at church every Sunday at Mass have always inspired me, in addition to my pastors. I am looking forward to celebrating the Sacraments and being available to the people I am entrusted with whenever they need me the most. I want to be within reach of the parishioners at all times.

Joseph Duque

Level of Study: 1st Theology

Home Parish: Prince of Peace-San Antonio
Podcast: Seminarian Q&A: Joseph Duque

My vocation journey began while reading about and watching the lives of holy and courageous priests, as well as hearing God calling me during moments of Adoration. If I am truly called to be a priest, I look forward to being an instrument of God’s mercy and love through the sacraments, and bringing the truth of God to the world.

Arturo Naranjo

Level of Study: 1st Theology

Home Parish: St. Ann–San Antonio

After having worked in public service, I realized that the service to which God was calling me was to give my life for him and in self-giving to others.  That is why I left everything I had and now I dedicate myself to share God’s mercy.

Hong Nguyen

Level of Study: 1st Theology

Home Parish: Vietnamese Martyrs–San Antonio

My vocational journey is deeply rooted in my dedication to charitable works, particularly towards those facing challenging circumstances, battling diseases, and the most vulnerable among us — orphans.  Throughout my life, the teachings of St. Don Bosco have held a central place, resonating with his powerful words, “ready, obedient with love.”  Inspired by his profound example, I am committed to humbly serve others, ready to make sacrifices in the pursuit of my vocation, while placing unwavering trust in the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

John Bonnin

Level of Study: 1st Pre-Theology

Home Parish: Prince of Peace–San Antonio

I was inspired by a few priests and teachers who seemed to see past the embattled mentality of our times, perceiving our perpetual duty to love and accompany all the beloved children of God without exception. I want to bring peace and happiness and the gift of true dialog to everyone I can!

Daniel Delgado-Acosta

Level of Study: 3rd College

Home Parish: San Fernando Cathedral–San Antonio

My vocation was inspired by my family and parish priests since a young age.  In answering a call from the Lord: “Come and follow me,” I want to be a priest to serve and give the sacraments to the people of God, and proclaim His word.

Dustin Martin

Level of Study: Propaedeutic Program

Home Parish: Our Lady of Perpetual Help–Selma

My priestly vocation started when God in Heaven heard my plea and Jesus rescued me. From that moment on, my heart and soul have been on fire with the Holy Spirit. What I look forward to the most about being a priest is the amazing opportunity to do God’s will.

Luis Martinez

Level of Study: Propaedeutic Program

Home Parish: Resurrection of the Lord–San Antonio

Many holy men and women that I have met are inspirations to me and my vocation.  Additionally, encountering God in the sacraments when I struggled to believe God’s love and mercy were also for me, has blessed me with the opportunity to help those who find themselves in similar situations.  I am most looking forward to bringing Our Savior to others, and others to Our Savior, through the celebration of the sacraments.

Javier Ramos

Level of Study: Propaedeutic Program

Home Parish: St. Gabriel–San Antonio

 What inspired my vocation was my family . . . more specifically, my parents. My parents are a great inspiration for me, not just in life, but in my faith as well, seeing how devoted they are to God and the Church ever since I was a little boy.  I thank them for always keeping the faith alive in our home, even in my later years, when some people steer away from God.

Levels of Study

There are the various levels of seminary study:

  • Language – Study for English proficiency
  • College – For those who do not yet have an undergraduate degree, there is a college seminary program
  • Pre-Theology – For those who have an undergraduate or other degrees but have not completed the required number of credit hours in Philosophy and Religious studies set by the US Bishops
  • Theology – There are 4 years of Theology in the major seminary program
  • Pastoral Year/Internship – Usually between the second and third year of Theology, the seminarians spend a year living in a parish community learning hands on through full-time ministry
  • Spirituality Program – Study of Catholic Spirituality and extra pastoral training

Vocation Office of the Archdiocese of San Antonio

2600 West Woodlawn Avenue
San Antonio, Texas 78228
(210) 735-0553

[email protected]