Receiving a vocation was the first and most unexpected revolution of my life; I was twenty years old and my expectations of life were turned completely on their head. It was however, the most wonderful time. Even though I had been studying and working towards a career in research biology, I was taken into something completely different and was sent, by Bishop Wheeler, to prepare for the priesthood in Spain.
The second revolution of my life was, once ordained in 1988, embracing the priesthood. Quite a lot of the past twenty five years has been a era in which I have continued to be formed as a priest. I think of the extraordinary impact which Pope John Paul II had on me, my Maryvale studies, the evangelising influence of Youth 2000, the powerful development which took place through my encounter with the St John Vianney Society, and then the tremendous experience of taking part in priestly formation at the Sydney Seminary of the Good Shepherd. All of these were utterly unlooked-for graces, but graces which have built me up as a priest.
The third revolution of my life is just beginning; now that I have returned from Australia and know that there is a New Evangelisation happening, the question uppermost in my mind is: what is my part in it?
I really do thank God for my Silver Jubilee; an event which I sense has marked me for the next step.