Bro. Anthony (Michael)
Ben - Michigan, studied at Stanford University (clerical brother candidate)
I grew up in a suburb of Detroit as the oldest of seven children. My parents very thoroughly raised us in the faith; I remember in particular catechism sessions on Sundays and family trips for Confession. All seven of us have been able to attend (or still are attending) Catholic schools until college, as well. I began to altar serve at our parish when I was first old enough, and I have continued to do so in various places ever since then. Interestingly enough, I chose Dominic as my Confirmation name in eighth grade, as I had recently read his biography and thought that his connexion with St Francis, my middle name, was appropriate. For high school, I attended De La Salle Collegiate, a school run by the Christian Brothers. This was my first real exposure to religious life, and their devotion to the school and its students was a powerful witness. Following high school, I attended Stanford University and studied physics. Moving into a secular environment forced me to more consciously practice my faith, and I found a wonderful group of friends who are striving to do likewise.
My parents had always encouraged me to consider priesthood or the religious life as well as marriage, so entering the priesthood is something that I have been praying about for a while. While at Stanford, I met the Dominicans through the Newman Centre. As I learnt more about the Order, I began to be attracted to the Dominican focus on academic work as a path to saving souls. Visits to Dominican communities showed me the joy of the way the brothers live community life, and further prayer has convinced me that this is something that I want to give my life to, and, more importantly, that God might want the same. I'm blessed to have been accepted to enter this year's novitiate class, and I look forward to this time of contemplation and prayer together with my brothers.