UNIVERSITY of NOTRE DAME

INSTITUTE FOR CHURCH LIFE

Echo 12 Joliet

Sebastian Rojas

Echo Class:
Echo 12 Parish Apprentice

Parish & Diocesan Placement:
St. John the Baptist Catholic Church
Diocese of Joliet

Hometown:
Lauderhill, Florida

Undergraduate Institution & Area(s) of Study:
University of Notre Dame, 2015
Theology

What are your favorite hobbies and activities outside of your ministry work?
My favorite activities outside of my ministry work include watching movies either at home or at the theater, Latin dancing, going to CrossFit, and looking up recipes and other things on Pinterest.

What have you enjoyed most about your Echo experience thus far?
That is a hard question to answer… The top two would be communal life and my ministry at the parish. I learn and grow so much from both every day in ways that I enjoy but also in ways that I need.

What kinds of things are you up to in your Echo parish?
At my parish I am currently helping to lead the youth group, assisting with religious education as a catechist, and working on different administrative and ministerial tasks related to Hispanic ministry.

What do you hope to do after Echo?
That is one hard question to answer. Broadly speaking I see myself going into one of the following: parish/diocesan ministry, continuing postgraduate study, or discerning religious life.

Becca Siar

Echo Class:
Echo 12 Parish Apprentice

Parish & Diocesan Placement:
St. Margaret Mary Catholic Church
Diocese of Joliet

Hometown:
Roanoke, Virginia

Undergraduate Institution & Area(s) of Study:
Roanoke College, 2015
Biochemistry
French (minor)

What are your favorite hobbies and activities outside of your ministry work?
I love listening to music, playing board games, and singing/dancing!

What attracted you to Echo and helped you decide to join the program?
Up until the end of my junior year, I was on the pharmacy track, but when people started asking me, “Why pharmacy?” I couldn’t give them an answer other than the fact that it was going to be a financially stable job.  It wasn’t until then that I began to discern my vocation and felt a strong call to ministry. One of my campus minister friends told me about Echo and that I should apply. So I did! The rest is history and is all in God’s hands now.

What kinds of things are you up to in your Echo parish?
I’m doing a little bit of everything in my parish such as youth ministry, adult faith formation, elementary/middle/high school catechesis, pastoral care, social justice ministry, marriage preparation, baptismal preparation, funeral preparation, and many others.  I’m really just trying to use this first year to see all that I can see and help out in any way that I can.

What is the most significant thing you’ve learned in Echo?
I have learned not to be afraid to ask questions. Questioning can be a beautiful thing and can lead to further understanding of something.

Joe Fredrickson

Echo Class:
Echo 12 Parish Apprentice

Parish & Diocesan Placement:
St. Irene Catholic Church
Diocese of Joliet

Hometown:
Houston, Texas

Undergraduate Institution & Area(s) of Study:
University of Notre Dame, 2015
Economics
Theology (minor)

What is your favorite quote, song, or image?
One of my favorite songs is a hymn called “Jesus Lives.” I got to sing it often with the Notre Dame Folk Choir as an undergrad and it always paints the most beautiful picture in my mind of the joy felt on Easter morning.

What attracted you to Echo and helped you decide to join the program?
The thing that attracted me most to Echo is that it allows people to do the things that I love to do: learn more about God and talk about Him with others. I knew I wanted to serve the Church in whatever I did after graduation, and Echo never stopped reaching out, presenting itself as a great opportunity to do just that.

What have you enjoyed most about your Echo experience thus far?
I have loved the seemingly endless stream of challenges and calls to growth that have surfaced throughout this time in Echo so far. Each day I am pushed to consider a new aspect of the ways God is calling me to empty myself and let Him go to work in my life. I have grown more in my relationships – with my fiancée, my housemates, and the people at my parish – than I ever thought was possible, and I have thoroughly enjoyed the difficulty of this Echo experience.

What advice would you give to Echo applicants?
Pray. A lot. Let God guide your heart and if you feel a burning resolution to serve Him in parish ministry or teaching theology, give this program a shot.

Tricia McCarthy

Echo Class:
Echo 12 Parish Apprentice

Parish & Diocesan Placement:
Holy Spirit Catholic Community
Diocese of Joliet

Hometown:
Highlands Ranch, Colorado

Undergraduate Institution & Area(s) of Study:
Loras College, 2015
Mathematics, Theology

What are your favorite hobbies and activities outside of your ministry work?
Some of my hobbies outside of ministry are anything outdoors. I love camping, hiking, and going on adventures! I also enjoy playing golf, knitting, and curling up with a good book whenever I get the chance!

What attracted you to Echo and helped you decide to join the program?
I was attracted to Echo because of its holistic formation, that it was not only focused on academics but also on the spiritual and human well being of the person. I knew that I wanted to go on to earn my graduate degree but I also wanted to gain experience in ministry while doing that. The intentional community life was also something that was very important to me in my discernment of my post-grad options.

What do you hope to do after Echo?
Right now I am just living in the present and seeing what God has in store for me at Holy Spirit over the next two years. I believe I will continue in ministry in some way but I don’t quite know how.

What advice would you give to Echo applicants?
Pray, ask God to reveal to you where he wants you to serve in the coming years, and get involved at your local parish or in you campus ministry program to gain experience!