Seminarian Jessie Banez says he is ‘in the best soil to grow’

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Home > Media > News > Seminarian Jessie Banez says he is ‘in the best soil to grow’
Seminarian Jessie Banez says he is ‘in the best soil to grow’

The hospitality, support and generosity of the people of Tasmania are important elements on Jessie Banez’s journey to the priesthood.

This support has kept him motivated physically, intellectually and spiritually, Mr Banez said.

Mr Banez is a fifth year seminarian who has been on a parish placement at Burnie-Wynyard, on the North West Coast, since June.

“The warm acceptance of Fr John Girdauskas, together with his parishioners, encourages me to be part of the daily parish life as I involve myself with them through different workplaces, such as the school apostolate by providing tutorial assistance to primary students, working with the St Vincent de Paul team and social welfare programs,” Mr Banez said.

“Burnie, being one of the busiest sea ports, provides a venue for me to interact with sea-fearers in their off-duty hours, sharing faith experience with the other Christian groups in ecumenical services and providing sacramental assistance and home visits for the sick and the aged.”

Mr Banez said the people of Tasmania are ‘lovely and accommodating’.

“My heart belongs to Tasmania because my coming here did not happen coincidentally,” Mr Banez said.

“I believe that God planted me in the best soil to grow and share my life.

“The sense of community life is the sign that inspired me more to pursue my vocation towards priesthood.”  

Mr Banez is the seventh of eight children and was born and raised in the Philippine province of Albay. He already has a Bachelor of Education degree and previously worked with street children in his home country.

He began his formation for the priesthood in Manila. He moved to Australia to continue his theological studies at Corpus Christi in Victoria last year as a seminarian for the Archdiocese of Hobart.

Mr Banez expects to remain in the Burnie-Wynyard Parish until December 26.

Image: Warm welcome: Seminarian Jessie Banez, left, who is on parish placement in Burnie-Wynyard, with parishioner Brian Scott, of Burnie.