Welcome from Father Marotti
Greetings to all!
When Bishop Bradley told me that I had been assigned as the new pastor of St. Ann’s, I was very excited. Although I am new here, I actually do have an important connection to this parish – it is the church in which I received the Sacrament of Confirmation. I had no idea at that time that I would even be a priest, let alone the pastor of this very parish! Needless to say, I am very happy to begin my pastorate here.
First, let me tell you a bit about myself. I was born and raised in Kalamazoo, attending school at St. Monica’s and Hackett Catholic Central, with St. Monica as my home parish. I graduated from Hackett in 2003, and attended college in southern California at Thomas Aquinas College, a school with a classical Great Books curriculum. I graduated with a degree in Philosophy. During my last couple of years in college, I discerned religious life and priesthood and, still being unsure upon graduation, decided to find a teaching job. I was hired – by St. Ann’s former pastor Father Fleckenstein, in fact – to teach at St. Philip High School in Battle Creek. After that year of teaching and discernment, I decided to apply as a seminarian for the Diocese. I was accepted and sent off to do my theological formation at the North American College in Rome, after which I was ordained to the priesthood in 2012. During my time in seminary, I worked at an AIDS hospice care facility in Rome and spent time with the Missionaries of Charity in southern India. It was an incredibly formative experience, for which I am thankful to you and all of the people of the Diocese who support seminarians.
My first priestly assignment was at St. Philip in Battle Creek, again with the former pastor of St. Ann’s, Fr. John. It was a great three years, during which I served as associate pastor, hospital chaplain, chaplain and teacher in the high school. At the end of my time in Battle Creek, I was sent back to Rome for another year to complete a further degree and returned to serve as vice rector at St. Augustine Cathedral.
In addition to being the pastor at St. Ann, I also serve as chaplain to St. Philip High School in Battle Creek. I teach one class period at the high school and spend the rest of my time here at the parish. I enjoy spending time with the students and staff of our school and working with parishioners on a vision for our church’s future. I welcome any thoughts and suggestions you might have about any issue that touches on parish life and my ministry to you.
My hobbies are, among other things, music and making fun of Fr. John.
Please know of my daily prayers for all of you, and I ask that you pray daily for me as well.
Fr. Francis Marotti