Last week I had the pleasure of sitting down with Fr. Kevin and asking him some questions about himself. I left knowing Fr. Kevin better than I did before, he gave some very interesting answers!
What made you decide to become a priest?
“Early in life I was influenced by my mom, and then the sisters in grade school. I went right after grade school into seminary. I’m considered a “lifer”.”
Have you enjoyed being a priest at Saint Margaret?
“I’ve been here a year – a year and 13 days – so it’s a learning experience. I mean it was 13 years down at St. Joe’s, and now I have a year under my belt here and I know the system now. The people are excellent, it’s just that different parishes are run differently, and I’ve had to get used to it.”
What is the most rewarding aspect of being a priest?
“Celebrating Mass and Eucharist, being with the people, sharing the Word and sharing the Bread of Life. You can see the changes, the strength of the Lord working.”
What is your favorite part of mass?
“I don’t have a favorite part. The Word and the Eucharist are one. Expressing Jesus in the Word of God through scriptures, and consecrating the bread and wine into the body and blood of Jesus, and then sharing that. The whole idea of sharing the Word and the Eucharist is the most important”
What is one goal you have in life that you plan to accomplish?
“I like to make sure whenever I leave a parish that people are a little closer to God, that somehow I was able to touch their lives and now they’re a little closer to God.”
Who would you consider your role model?
“Two priests, one is deceased. Msgr. James J. Cronin, he was a mentor, guide, everything. He preached my first mass, he vested me, he would live with me after he retired. I took care of him, I was his personal representative. And when he died I took care of him. The other one is Msgr. Joseph Luca, he was a pastor at St. Louis. He was my first pastor, everything I learned about being a priest is from him.”
Can you think of a time in your life where you had to take a big leap of faith?
“I was in seminary from 9th grade on. My brother was in seminary with me, two years ahead. The year I was going into my first year and he was going into his third year, both of us were at a parish in Baltimore. He really kind of fell in love with the secretary at a Lutheran church, he left and got married and became a Lutheran minister. I had to go to seminary and everybody was asking about it, and my mom was crushed, and I was wondering what was happening. And the second point was when my mom died before I was ordained. I said “Lord, what are you doing?” But when one door closes, another one opens. The Lord works, He came through, gave me friends and support groups, and things like that. Each of the two times, when I was down, the Holy Spirit guided people to go to me.”
Where did you grow up?
“I grew up in Baltimore City. I was there until I was in 5th grade, and we moved to the county. I went to school in the city until 8th grade. Moving from the city to the county was a big change. The county was different, the road we were on wasn’t paved, it was stone, this was 1965. It eventually got paved.”
What was your first job?
“I worked at a fruit stand on Joppa road. Burton’s. I was 14 and I worked there maybe six weeks during the summer.”
What are your hobbies?
“I like gardening, I do a lot of cooking. I have a garden at my Churchville house but the deer are going after it. I had a cucumber plant growing real high, and it ate every leaf off of it. Now it’s hit the pepper plant, and the tomato plant, and even the rose bushes.”
Do you have any hidden talents?
“There’s not too much hidden about me.”
What’s the best joke you know?
“I’m not a good joke person, I can’t remember any.”
If you could share a meal with any 4 individuals, living or dead, who would you pick?
“I would love to have my mom and my dad, and Fr. Cronin.”
If your life was a movie, what would the title be?
If you could throw a parade for anything, what would it be for?
“St. Patrick’s Day”
Favorite ice cream flavor?
“Right now? It’s at Safeway, coconut chocolate chip”
What is your favorite type of candy?
“I’m not a sweets person, some chocolate. Salty stuff – potato chips, pretzels, Cheetos, Doritos. Those are good. Candy? Not as much.”
“I love seafood, any kind of seafood”
What is your favorite movie?
“I love Hallmark movies! Any kind of Hallmark movies I like, I love the channel. And then in October all the Christmas movies run all the time! I love Christmas movies.”
What is one piece of advice you have for the youth of Saint Margaret?
“Be open. Be open to the spirit. It’s surprising what happens when you have that openness. Have the openness where the Spirit can come in.”