Philip DeckerPastoral Year
University of South Florida
When people find out that I grew up in Florida, they immediately ask the most frequent question I have received about my discernment so far, “Why are you studying for the Diocese of Richmond?” And my answer each time has been the same: Being raised in a military family, I am no stranger to moving homes. The definition of home that I knew was wherever my family was. There was never a specific place to call home. But when I moved to Virginia, I immediately knew that God called me here and wanted me to remain here for a while. It was almost immediately that this state and my diocese became a place to call home. And it was by that very same definition that I knew from such a young age: home is where my family is. And my family is the Diocese of Richmond.
I attended University of South Florida in Tampa and received my Bachelor’s degree in English in August of 2012. I worked for a year and a half at St. Joan of Arc as Youth and Young Adult Ministry Coordinator here in our very own diocese. As I served the youth and young adults in my home parish, I grew to know Jesus Christ more deeply, who provided me with the quiet and the prayer to discern God’s call. When I placed my trust in Jesus Christ, applied to seminary, and received acceptance, I was asked to continue my formation at Theological College in DC, where I now reside.
On any given day, you can find me listening to a wide array of music, writing in my journal, or reading a good book in a comfy chair. I also love “dreary” weather as much as I love sunny weather.
- Favorite book: Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury and Introduction to the Devout Life by St. Francis de Sales
- Favorite saint: St. Philip Neri
- Home parish: St. Joan of Arc, Yorktown