Welcome to Men of the Hearts, a monthly podcast from the Archdiocese of Detroit Office of Priestly Vocations. Join your hosts, Fr. Craig Giera and Fr. Drew Mabee, as they explore the priesthood, hear vocation stories from priests all over the Archdiocese, and answer questions about discerning a priestly vocation. Tune in every month to wherever you get your podcast and learn more at detroitpriestlyvocations.com.
October 2nd, 2023 | Season 1 | 1 hr 6 mins
blessed sacrament, catholic, discernment, eucharist, prayer, priesthood, seminary, service, vocation
“I'm more content than I could ever have thought possible.” Fr. Mike Cassar joins Fr. Craig Giera and Fr. Drew Mabee on this month’s episode of Men of the Hearts. Fr. Mike, now the Vocations Director for the Diocese of Lansing, grew up in a Lutheran family. Through gentle movements of grace, Fr. Mike was led to become Catholic, enter the seminary, and be ordained a priest.
August 31st, 2023 | Season 1 | 1 hr 8 mins
blessed sacrament, catholic, discernment, eucharist, prayer, priesthood, seminary, vocation
“I did nothing from Monday through Friday but pray before the Blessed Sacrament.” Fr. Craig Giera and Fr. Drew Mabee welcome Mgsr. Charles Kozanke, the rector of Ste. Anne de Detroit and the Episcopal Vicar for the Central Region of the Archdiocese of Detroit. Msgr. Kozanke has seen the Lord use his gifts and talents throughout his priesthood, and describes how amazing things can happen through prayer.
June 28th, 2023 | Season 1 | 54 mins 25 secs
adoration, catholic, discernment, priesthood, vocation
“I viewed my vocation as a riddle I needed to figure out. But this is a relationship with Jesus I need to full-heartedly embrace.” Fr. Paul Snyder joins Fr. Craig Giera and Fr. David Pellican as they dive into Fr. Paul’s vocation. For a number of reasons, Fr. Paul had ruled out the priesthood and when he felt the call at the end of college, he didn’t think it was real. After good priestly advice, prayer in Adoration, and regular daily Mass, Fr. Paul entered seminary and has put his love for marketing to use in ways he never expected.
May 24th, 2023 | Season 1 | 1 hr 3 mins
catholic, discernment, parish, priesthood, vocation
“I’ve never heard of anyone regretting exploring a call to the priesthood.” Fr. Craig Giera and Fr. David Pellican invite Fr. John Dudek to the Men of the Hearts podcast. Their upbeat conversation is a taste of the community life they share as priests serving together. They tackle dealing with transition, returning to places of grace, making mistakes as priests, and living in obedience to the Archbishop. “You’ll never be miserable if you’re doing what God created you to do.”
May 2nd, 2023 | Season 1 | 1 hr 8 mins
discernment, priesthood, vocation
“The Lord never takes without giving back more.” Fr. Craig Giera and Fr. David Pellican invite Detroit-native The Most Reverend John M. Quinn, Bishop Emeritus of Winona-Rochester, to this episode of Men of the Hearts. This former bishop of the Diocese of Winona-Rochester grew up at Our Lady of Good Counsel on Detroit’s east side. He shares about his discernment into seminary, facing changes in the Church, the role spiritual direction has played in faithfully listening to the Lord, and he marvels at God’s faithfulness. Get to know this inspiring guest who Fr. Craig describes as, “the happiest man I’ve met in my whole life.”
March 30th, 2023 | Season 1 | 56 mins 37 secs
“Discernment is a win-win situation!” Fr. Jeff Allan brings his insights and wisdom to today’s episode of Men of the Hearts. Fr. Craig Giera and Fr. David Pellican invite Fr. Jeff to share his vocation story, and how God moved the priesthood from “fourth to first” on his list of dreams for his future. Fr. Jeff explains his two chapters of discerning the priesthood, and now how his ministry as a hospital chaplain has opened his heart to the Holy Spirit’s activity through him.
February 27th, 2023 | Season 1 | 47 mins 54 secs
“Do you know His voice? If you’re not praying, you’re never gonna know your vocation.” Today’s guest Fr. David Pellican joins his host Fr. Craig Giera in discussing Fr. David’s new assignment to study sacramental theology in Rome. Together, they revisit Fr. David’s vocation story, this invitation by Archbishop Vigneron to study for the sake of our future priests and the joyful adventure of freely following God’s plan for your life.
January 27th, 2023 | Season 1 | 57 mins 51 secs
“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.
January 3rd, 2023 | Season 1 | 1 hr 3 mins
“Marriage is good. And priesthood is good. And how do you choose between two goods? God will guide you if you faithfully seek him out.” Fr. Craig Giera and Fr. David Pellican are joined by Fr. David Pellican's brother-in-law Mr. John Pratt to discuss discerning a vocation. John considered the priesthood from an early age, but felt the Lord draw him toward marriage. His insights into prayer, desire for true fulfillment and the surrender to God’s will are inspiring.
November 29th, 2022 | Season 1 | 59 mins 33 secs
catholic, discernment, priesthood, seminary
“I thought my life was going to end when I entered seminary, but it really began once I got there.” Fr. Craig Giera and Fr. David Pellican are joined by Fr. J.J. Mech, rector at Detroit’s Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament. Together, they discuss the role of art in our churches and encountering the Lord. Fr. J.J. shares his vocation story, his parent’s reaction to him entering seminary, and how he’s been fulfilled and filled with joy in his vocation as a priest.
November 1st, 2022 | Season 1 | 54 mins 50 secs
“It’s not about what you do, it’s about who you are.” Fr. Craig Giera and Fr. David Pellican are joined by Fr. Cy Whitaker, S.J. This powerful discussion covers the early seeds of a vocation in Fr. Cy’s childhood, the loss of his father, joining the Jesuits at age 40, and his role as a spiritual director at Sacred Heart Major Seminary. Be inspired as Fr. Cy describes the priest’s identity as more important than the work he does and as he offers encouragement to all men discerning.
September 30th, 2022 | Season 1 | 1 hr 5 mins
discernment, priesthood, seminary, vocation
“Find Jesus in the Eucharist. If you want to know what God wants, go to Him.” Fr. Craig Giera and Fr. David Pellican are joined by Fr. Perrin Atisha who shares his journey to ordination at age 26 for the Chaldean Eparchy of St. Thomas the Apostle. Through a powerful retreat in high school, time in Eucharistic Adoration, his father’s approval of his vocation, and a trip to Iraq, God showed Fr. Perrin that he was called to the priesthood. Now Director of Vocations, Fr. Perrin gives valuable insight into the heart of a priest and discernment 101. “We don’t need perfect men. We need men who are in love with God.”
September 9th, 2022 | Season 1 | 1 hr 3 mins
discernment, priesthood, seminary, vocation
“Never be afraid to accept your vocation. Because God will supply what we need.” Fr. Craig Giera and Fr. David Pellican are joined by Fr. Matthew Hood. Together they discuss Fr. Matt’s journey from asking big questions about the Faith in high school to being ordained a priest. After spending eight years in seminary, Fr. Matt has served the Archdiocese of Detroit in parish and school ministry. He offers advice for men discerning: “If God has given you even the smallest desire for the priesthood, pursue it. That doesn't happen often.”
July 29th, 2022 | Season 1 | 46 mins 1 sec
catholic, discernment, priesthood, vocation
“Don’t be afraid.” Fr. David Pellican welcomes Bishop Robert Fisher, auxiliary bishop of the Archdiocese of Detroit, to Men of the Hearts. In this episode, they discuss His Excellency’s journey to the priesthood. He first considered the priesthood at age 10, but that thought was pushed away by a desire for marriage and a job in the business world. After serving at a summer camp in college, he felt his faith reawakened. Though not having full clarity, he entered seminary and took it one year at a time before being ordained in 1992. Bishop Fisher also shares about serving as Director of Priestly Vocations and how he found out Pope Francis selected him to be a bishop.
June 29th, 2022 | Season 1 | 1 hr 7 mins
"Whatever you need to hear the voice of God, if you're open to it, God's gonna talk to you." Join Fr. Craig Giera as he welcomes Fr. John Kopson, who shares his journey to the priesthood. After leaving college seminary with a desire for more certainty in his vocation, Fr. John began working at a nursing home as a Certified Nurse Assistant. After an encounter with a dying priest, Fr. John experienced the Lord giving him the grace and clarity he needed to return to the seminary and ultimately, be ordained to the priesthood. This episode of Men of the Hearts closes with encouragement for men discerning to surrender to the Lord, and He will satisfy their desires.
May 31st, 2022 | Season 1 | 57 mins 18 secs
catholic, detroit, priest, vocation
“Can I really be happy doing this?” Join hosts Fr. Craig Giera and Fr. David Pellican as they welcome Bishop Donald Hanchon, a Detroit native brimming with wisdom for vocational discernment. His Excellency shares his story of feeling called to the priesthood in grade school, attending high school seminary, and the questions and fears he faced along the way. A significant health concern in college seminary threatened his studies and brought him before Jesus in the Eucharist, a moment in which the Lord confirmed his vocation, “From your mother’s womb, I have called you.” Bishop Hanchon reminds us that God’s call for our life will bring us joy and satisfaction.