A back arrow

All Articles

Looking for advice

Looking for advice

Thomas M. Columbus September 02, 2021

Death and a podcast

Brandon Paluch, S.M. ’06, took a Jesuit to lunch in Rome. Paluch, who was ordained last August, wanted to thank him for being his teacher. And he asked what advice the man would give him about being a priest.

Brandon Paluch
Photograph by ROBIN JERSTAD

“Preach about death,” the Jesuit replied.

Startled at first, Paluch then recalled words that Blessed Father William Joseph Chaminade, Marianist co-founder, liked to quote from The Imitation of Christ by Thomas à Kempis: “In all things consider the end.”

We should consider what is our final objective and order our lives accordingly. “Few people at the end of their lives wish they had worked more weekends,” Paluch said. “More wish they had spent more time with their children.”

The Jesuit’s words were pre-COVID. “I don’t have to preach about death,” Paluch said. “It’s all around us.” The first funeral for Paluch after becoming a priest-in-residence at Holy Rosary Parish in San Antonio was for a man his age who had no preexisting conditions.

“How can I, after the pandemic, help people develop the virtues of Jesus?”

“We have all been reminded of our fragility,” Paluch said. “Listening to people who have developed an interior life of prayer and meditation, I learned that people with inner resources seem to be more resilient.”

Looking forward, he asked himself, “How can I, after the pandemic, help people develop the virtues of Jesus?”

A UD classmate, Chris Albanese ’07, suggested he put recordings of his homilies online, noting that in a supposedly visual age there is something soothing about audio. Also among the advice Paluch has picked up as he begins his priesthood is that brevity is a virtue.

His short, soothing, daily homilies can be found on most podcast platforms and at filiusmariae.libsyn.com.

Surprise! A moment that art remembers