DOL Seminarians Attend CUA Orientation


Cardinal Donald Wuerl challenged the students at the Annual Mass and Orientation of CUA at the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, DC to put their faith into action. Cardinal Wuerl (who is Bishop of the Diocese of Washington as well as the University Chancellor) challenged the students and faculty to “go out and meet people, to encounter them and speak about the faith, to accompany them in their times of difficulty, and to engage them in the beauty and wonder of our Catholic faith. In doing these things, he said, they will find themselves growing closer than ever to Jesus.”


Reed Bellingham and Michael Vidrine are seen here reverently praying and participating in the CUA annual Mass of the Holy Spirit. Reed is sponsored by Our Lady of Prompt Succor Parish in Coteau, and Michael is sponsored by St. John Parish in Melville. Both are in their first year of the Basselin Program at Theological College in Washington, DC and attend Catholic University.

Nicholas Hebert, also a DOL seminarian, is in his second Basselin year and is sponsored by St. Michael the Archangel Parish in Crowley.

“The Basselin Scholars Program is a special, three-year honors program in philosophy consisting of the junior and senior years of undergraduate study and one year of graduate work, leading to the B.A. and M.A. degrees respectively. It is for qualified seminarians who have a vocation to the priesthood appropriate to their age and level of discernment, and who have completed two years of undergraduate study with a superior level of academic performance.” (

Check out the link below to see the full article from CUA and photos from the Mass.

Port Barre Native Enters Novitiate at Saint Joseph Abbey

Marquis Simon

When he was just six years old, Marquis Simon knew that there was something very special about religious life. He loved going to mass with his grandmother and was always eager to learn more about his faith. His admiration and respect for the priests he knew is what sparked his interest in discerning a religious vocation. Initially setting out to become a priest himself, Simon eventually found his home at Saint Joseph Abbey.

Early on Sunday morning, July 10th, in a private ceremony held in the Monastery Chapter Room, Novice Marquis entered the next stage in his life to becoming a monk at the Abbey. Novice Marquis was accepted into the novitiate, a year in which will be marked by a separation from the world and an acclimation to one’s new life in the monastery. The novice takes classes in monastic history and spirituality and contributes to the life of the community in prayer and work. After a year in the novitiate, the novice may petition to make his first profession of vows.

Marquis Novitiate Ceremony (2)

In tenth grade, Novice Marquis, who is from Port Barre, La. took a more active pursuit in discerning his vocation. He contacted his diocesan vocation director and took several discernment retreats. In eleventh grade, he visited the Abbey and Seminary College on a Come & See retreat designed for young men to see what seminary life is like. It was at this retreat that he was first introduced to the monks of Saint Joseph Abbey. He eventually decided that diocesan priesthood wasn’t for him.

After graduating high school, Novice Marquis reached out to Fr. Augustine, who was the Abbey’s vocation director at the time, to get more information about discerning with the monastery. Novice Marquis was invited for a visit, which just so happened to coincide with the Feast of St. Benedict, the funeral of Fr. Ambrose and the first vows of Br. Cyprian. “I got to see monks mourning, celebrating the feast of their patron saint, and rejoicing during first vows of one of their own. I saw the gamut of emotions from the monastic community here, and I just knew that it was something I had to be part of,” said Novice Marquis.

Not old enough to enter the monastery at 19, Novice Marquis spent two years as a seminarian in the Seminary College, located at Saint Joseph Abbey, before deciding to enter the monastery. The beautiful grounds of the Abbey have also provided Novice Marquis the opportunity to spend a lot of time outdoors, something he really loves to do. “As a postulant, I’ve been given many assignments; they try to place you in all areas for a short period of time. But I really have enjoyed working in the garden and greenhouse. It’s fantastic being able to grow the food we eat,” Novice Marquis said.

Novice Marquis is not only excited to share the food with his fellow monks, but with the seminarians as well. With the new academic year just beginning, the renewed activity on campus of the record 154 seminarians is a welcome sight for Novice Marquis.

“It is really a gift, a monastic vocation, to have the privilege to so intensely and unrestrictedly live a life devoted to seeking the will of God as we as monks strive to do daily. It is my hope that taking this next step of discernment will be the beginning of a great monastic adventure at the end of which I will be found to have truly sought God and His will, “ Novice Marquis said.

Marquis Simon in garden at Abbey (2)

To learn more about a monastic vocation at Saint Joseph Abbey, visit

Article written by James Shields
Manager of Communications
Saint Joseph Abbey and Seminary College

Six Seminarians Accepted into Candidacy at Summer Seminar

The Office of Vocations is happy to announce that:

On August 3, 2016 at Our Lady of the Oaks Retreat Center Chapel, at the concluding Mass of the annual Seminarian Summer Seminar, Bishop J. Douglas Deshotel admitted six Lafayette seminarians into Candidacy for Holy Orders. In the Admission to Candidacy rite, the candidate for ordination publicly expresses his intention to receive ordination as a Deacon and subsequently as a Priest.

Candidacy Aug 2016

These six men along with fellow DOL seminarian Benjamin Pitre, are scheduled to be ordained to Transitional Diaconate on May 27, 2017 at Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist in Lafayette.

Blake Steven Dubroc, son of Ted Dubroc and Sandra Leger Laborde, is in Third Theology at Notre Dame Seminary. He is sponsored by Our Lady of Wisdom Parish on the UL campus in Lafayette.

Korey Ray LaVergne, son of Kevin and Roxanne Langlinais LaVergne, is sponsored by Our Lady of Lourdes Parish in Erath and is in Third Theology at Notre Dame Seminary in New Orleans.

Stephen Andre Pellessier, who is in Third Theology at Notre Dame Seminary, is the son of Steven and Beth Lavergne Pellessier and is sponsored by St. Mary Mother of the Church Parish in Lafayette.

Benjamin James Pitre is the son of Benjamin and Suzanne Hebert Pitre. He is in Third Theology at the Pontifical North American College in Rome and is sponsored by St. Landry Church Parish in Opelousas.

Andrew Phillip Schumacher is in Third Theology at Notre Dame Seminary and is sponsored by Our Lady of Wisdom Parish on the UL campus in Lafayette. He is the son of Dr. Pamela Darr and Scott Schumacher.

Brent Lee Smith, sponsored by Our Lady of Wisdom Parish in Lafayette, is the son of Raymond and Carol Ann Melancon Smith. He is in Third Theology at Notre Dame Seminary.

Joseph Kyle White is the son of David and JoLynn Boudreaux Dean and Terry Bret White. Kyle is in Third Theology at Mount St. Mary’s Seminary in Emmitsburg, Maryland and is sponsored by Our Lady of Wisdom Parish on the UL campus in Lafayette.


Fr Bordelon with whole group

God has blessed the Diocese of Lafayette with 50 seminarians for the fall 2016 semester. As they return to St. Joseph Seminary in Covington, Notre Dame in New Orleans, Mount St. Mary in Emmitsburg, Maryland, Theological College in DC, or North American College in Rome, we offer our prayers of thanksgiving and petition for perseverance, fortitude, and wisdom for these discerning men.


Father Bordelon with our four transitional deacons, Rev. Mr. David Rozas, Rev. Mr. Rene Pellessier, Rev. Mr. Matthew Hebert, and Rev. Mr. Christopher Cambre. All four are preparing for ordination to Holy Priesthood on June 10, 2017 at the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist.


We especially welcome our TWELVE new seminarians: Dexter Thibodeaux, Nick Ware, Calvin LeMaire, Phillip Domingue, Alexander Hargrave, Luke Kirk, Andrew Furka, Jace Gyles, Cameron Domingue, Alex Lancon, Jonathan Harris, and Hayden Lacour.

UPDATE: Successful Vocation Supper with Bishop Deshotel – August 17th, 6:30 pm

Vocation supper 81716

The Vocation Supper with Bishop Deshotel was enjoyed by Teri Johnson from Eunice, Mallory Perry and Kerri Foret from Patterson, Sr. Mary Magdalen, and Sr. Uyen Vu, Daniella Francis Dupre from Washington, and Amy Berzas from Mamou. Rev. Mr. Christopher Cambre and Monsignor Robert Romero, Pastor of St. Anthony in Eunice; and Father Herb Bennerfield, Pastor of St. Joseph in Patterson, sponsored and accompanied the attendees.

The next Vocation Supper with the Bishop will be for young men on October 12, 2016, 6:30 pm at Immaculata.

Bishop Douglas Deshotelvocation dinner with bishop 2

vocation dinner with bishop

Are you a young woman discerning religious life? Would you like to meet other young women similarly interested, talk to a religious sister and Fr. Kevin Bordelon, Director of Vocations and Seminarians, and at the same time have a great dinner with our new bishop, Bishop Deshotel? If you answered yes, please join us for dinner, Wednesday, August 17th at 6:30 pm at Immaculata, 1408 Carmel Drive, Lafayette. To register, please call 337.261.5690 or email Consider the beauty of religious life. To quote The Council of Major Superiors of Women Religious, “For each religious formation is the process of becoming more and more a disciple of Christ. Growing in union with and in configuration to Him.”

Nuns in Rome June 2013 near PNAC

Bishop Deshotel Ordains Three Men to Priesthood

For the first time since Bishop J. Douglas Deshotel was installed as Bishop of Lafayette in April 2016, he has ordained three men to Holy Priesthood for the Lafayette Diocese. Fathers Alexander Albert, Joel Faulk and Michael Richard were ordained June 11, 2016 at 10 am at the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist in Lafayette.


On Saturday, May 28, 2016, four Lafayette Diocese seminarians were ordained to the Transitional Diaconate. Christopher Cambre, Rene Pellessier, Matthew Hebert, and David Rozas were ordained transitional deacons at the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist in Lafayette. The following day each preached for the first time at their respective home parishes. Rev Mr. Cambre is sponsored by St. Pius X in Lafayette and is the son of Rick and Sandra Cambre. His brother, Brice Cambre, who is also a seminarian having completed his second year of philosophy at St. Ben’s, read the second reading at the ordination. Rev. Mr. Pellessier, sponsored by St. Mary, Mother of the Church in Lafayette, is the son of Steven and Beth Pellessier. His brother, Stephen, who recently completed his second year of philosophy at Notre Dame in New Orleans, was the lector for the first reading. Rev. Mr. Hebert is the son of Deacon Joseph and Angie Hebert and is sponsored by St. Mary Magdalen in Abbeville. Deacon Joe was able to vest his son in the ordination ceremony. Rev. Mr. Rozas is sponsored by St. Peter in Carencro and is the son of Kent and Margaret Rozas.

bishop and trans dcn ord 052816
(Click image to enlarge)

According to the USCCB, “As ministers of Word, deacons proclaim the Gospel, preach, and teach in the name of the Church. As ministers of Sacrament, deacons baptize, lead the faithful in prayer, witness marriages, and conduct wake and funeral services. As ministers of Charity, deacons are leaders in identifying the needs of others, then marshaling the Church’s resources to meet those needs.”