Screenshot shows Fernando Camou, a seminarian for the Diocese of Phoenix, speaking with Fr. Rob Clements, host of “Catholics Matter,” prior to his departure for Rome. Click photo to watch full interview (recorded in 2011).

Stumbled across this bulletin letter that Fr. Mike Straley wrote to his parishioners at Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Glendale. It updates them on Fernando Camou, a parishioner-turned-diocesan seminarian, who alongside Kevin Grimditch (from Corpus Christi in Ahwtaukee), finished a year of seminary studies in Rome. The seminarians often get a variety of experience in their summer assignments. What Fr. Straley shares seems a bit out of the ordinary and pretty neat to know about, even if you don’t officially belong to OLPH.


I recently received a message from our seminarian, Fernando Camou. He has completed his first year of Theology, and, of course, did very well. He is now staying with a family along with another seminarian in San Giovanni Rotondo. If that town sounds familiar to some of you, it is where Padre Pio lived, ministered and died. He said that later this month he will return to Rome to help with orientation of the new seminarians, including Dan Connealy from Phoenix.

Fernando, along with three other seminarians, will then spend four weeks in India working with Mother Theresa’s sisters. They hope to end their stay in India with a retreat where Mother Teresa always made her retreats. I told Fernando that between Padre Pio and Mother Teresa I expect him to be very holy when he returns to us.

Please remember to keep Fernando in your prayers as he continues his studies; he has three more years before graduation and priestly ordination. Fernando promises to keep us in his prayers as well.

Also, please remember those from our community who are discerning their vocations to either the priesthood, permanent diaconate, or the consecrated life. Fr. Paul Sullivan, the Director of Vocations for the diocese, told me he considers OLPH-Glendale a “hot bed of vocations”. They will only grow and nurture with your encouragement and prayer.

Pax, Father Mike

If you’d like to keep closer tabs on Fernando and Kevin, they’re sharing blogging duties. Most posts are also shared via Phoenix Priest’s Facebook feed, which Fr. Paul Sullivan, director of vocations for the Phoenix Diocese, manages.

Fernando also appeared on “Catholics Matter,” a locally-produced TV segment that follows the TV Mass every Sunday on AZTV7/Cable 13. It originally aired shortly before his departure to Rome. He shares his vocation/discernment story and previews his life in Rome.