“It’s not time wasted. There’s no loss in discernment.” Fr. Craig Giera is joined by Fr. Salvatore Palazzolo, a canon lawyer for the Archdiocese of Detroit. Together they dive into Fr. Sal’s vocation story. While studying mechanical engineering, Fr. Sal went through a conversion experience after moving home with his parents. The search for Truth brought Fr. Sal into the faithful practice of his faith, daily Mass, and studying the Church. After hearing the Lord in prayer, and a car accident, Fr. Sal entered seminary.
(00:03) Fr. Craig Giera welcomes us to this episode of Men of the Hearts. With the episode’s guest, Fr. Salvatore Palazzolo, they discuss the mystery of Christmas. Fr. Sal explains a few of his family’s traditions surrounding Christmas.
(8:01) Fr. Sal shares his vocation story: he grew up in a big Italian Catholic family, and always expected he would raise a big family and have a home that was hospitable for his extended family. He went to school at Kettering University for mechanical engineering. He felt “life was good” and he was doing well financially and otherwise, but he didn’t feel satisfied. So, Fr. Sal transferred to Oakland University to be closer to home. Moving home provided him the opportunity to attend Mass with his family and he sensed that his faith was the answer to why he felt empty.
(21:45) “I would say my reconversion happened through the transcendental of Truth.” Fr. Sal talks about his search for the truth about the Church, God, and the Catholic faith. Encountering the Catechism and searching for understanding brought Fr. Sal to the decision to make his Catholic faith his own. “The more I learned about my faith, the more my faith grew, and the more my love for God grew.” He started reading scripture, attending a young adult group, and going to daily Mass. The Catechism played a key role in his conversion.
(27:01) A sign from God: Fr. Sal shares the impactful story of how a car accident changed his perspective on his faith and his life -- and his future. After a powerful experience of a call to the priesthood in prayer, Fr. Sal contacted the Vocation Director and attended a Come and See at the seminary. After visiting the seminary, Fr. Sal entered and following his studies, he was ordained a priest.
(42:45) Canon Law: Fr. Sal shares about his important role in the Archdiocese of Detroit. He shares what canon law is, what it looks like to study it, and how he helps the Church in this position. “God is fulfilling a desire I always had, but in the way He always planned for me.” Fr. Craig shares, “Sometimes people think ‘if I join the priesthood, I’ll lose everything of myself.’ But really, I’ll become who I’m supposed to be.” The episode closes with Fr. Sal sharing some advice to men discerning the priesthood: “Giving time to discerning your vocation is pleasing to God, because it puts the focus of your life on Him and your faith is going to grow… it’s not time wasted. There’s no loss in discernment.”