Letter from Fr Jerome Bai, SVD


I remember that I loved to adore the Holy Eucharist every night. One night, when I was kneeling in front of the tabernacle, my vocation to the priesthood began and could not stop. When I grew up, I went to the seminary in my home diocese. However, at the time, I never thought that I would one day go to the United States to be a missionary.

In 2005, after my theological study, one of my friends, a Divine Word missionary invited me to visit the SVD community in Beijing, China, where I met Fr. Arnold Sprenger, SVD, a good mentor and a holy man of God.  We consider him in China as the second of Saint Joseph Freinademetz (first SVD missionary in China). He gave me two little books, one is about the SVD community, another is the biography of Saint Joseph Freinademetz. After reading the two books and seeing his lifestyle, I decided to join them.

In 2007, I professed my first vows and was sent back to my diocese to serve. In 2010, superiors sent me to learn English at Divine Word College in Epworth, Iowa. A year later, the SVD province of Chicago offered me the opportunity to study the master's program at CTU. After consulting with my superiors and friends in China, I accepted their generous offer. In 2014, I made my final vows in Chicago and the following year, I was ordained a priest. During the ordination mass, I couldn't help crying like a child, Hahahaha.

After my final vows, the SVD Generalate sent me to the USW Province. In 2015 as you know, after my ordination, the provincial sent me to this parish of All Souls as vicar. In 2017, my superiors sent me to learn Spanish, and then I was assigned to the Church of Santa Catalina in Rialto in 2018. Then I was in residence in San Juan Evangelista, Los Angeles in 2019, and then I was in the Church of Our Lady from Guadalupe in Ontario from 2019 to 2021. Five years later, I return to All Souls Church again to see them again!

Thank God for accompanying me on this path all the time, and for bringing me among you. Thank you so much for your loving support, tender care, and unceasing encouragement before, now, and in the future. I know I can't speak English or Spanish very well, but if any of my expressions bother you, please excuse me and correct me. I would like to dedicate my life to serve the people of God in this parish and walk with you in the path of God and the Church.
May the heart of Jesus live in the hearts of all of you! United in Christ!

             Fr. Jerome Bai. SVD




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