What are some of the factors that led to your decision to enter the seminary and discern the question of a vocation to the priesthood?
When I was at high school, I was an alter server in my parish. It seems to me that I felt the God talked to me whenever I severed the mass. At that time, entering the university was the first step that I could enter in the discernment program in the Archdiocese of Hanoi. Meanwhile I was preparing for that examine, My pastor gave me good advices that helped me to discern my vocation.
Who are some of the people who influenced your decision to enter the seminary? What is it about them that assisted you?
I believe I was first influent by Jesus who I am following. I also believe that through people around me, He is giving me a Call. My spiritual director, father Joseph, is one of those people. When he first ordained and came to my parish, he was very attentive to help young people to discern their vocations. Fortunately, I was one of them. Through his example in his priestly life, his sharing and advices, I decided to begin my discerning when I entered university.
What would you say is the role of prayer in the life of a seminarian and what effect does it have on one's ability to see God's call?
Prayers play a significant role for every catholic. It is more important to the formation of a seminarian. How does a seminarian, future priest, can stay in the relationship with God, the one
who calls him into the priestly vocation if he does not “talk” to Him. Seminarian prays not only for himself but also the others. This is one of the important tasks he would find himself be familiar with, since he is in the seminary, which he will do every single day in his priestly life later on.
At the time in the seminary, prayers help candidates to recognize what “Call” that God entrusted on him. This is especially important in the discerning journey.
What advice would you give to a man who thinking about his vocation and is considering that God may be calling him to be a priest?
One thing I would say to those men is that be couraged and step ahead. I would not know whether God is calling me if I do not stand up and follow Him. This reminds me to a man who comes to ask Jesus about the goodness. Though He is calling, He wants us, if I have to say, to answer that call freely.
What do you like most about being a seminarian?
One of the beautiful things that I find in being a seminarian is that I am formed in a growing up spiritual life in the seminary. In the seminary, I learn how to pray the prayer of the church, the Liturgy of hours… The classes in the seminary, though challenge, are also interests me a lot. I learn a lot about thinking of thinkers in the pass. I learn about what is advantages and disadvantages of the thinking which, I believe, are really helpful for me in future life.
What do you think is the greatest challenge facing a man who is considering the seminary?
I thing, subjectively, the hardest thing each seminarian is self-controlling. It looks like any other that a seminarian has very similar apt to do his own desires. Sometimes, it is hard to setup a
perfect and effective schedule for whole day. There may be some interesting things that distract a seminarian from integrity with his plans. Once he own the self-controlling virtue, he would easy build up his spiritual life based on this very concrete foundation.
What are some of your hobbies or pastimes? What are some of the things you like to do in your "free" time?
As a way to release stress, I am interested in photography. It help me in developing my imagination, organization and creative mind. Besides, I usually find and and read books related to philosophy and theology. However, sometimes I just pick a book accidentally if it attracts me in the first sight.
What do you think is the best way to encourage vocations to the priesthood in the Archdiocese of Boston?
I believe one of the best way to encourage vocations to priesthood in the Archdiocese of Boston should somehow start at the parish and the pastor is the one who is first responsible for this. He may recognize man in his parish, encourages and directs those man to consider the discernment.