On July 1, 2017, Fr. Peter Damian became our eighth pastor. Fr. Peter is a native of Romania, and citizen of both Romania and Italy. He is currently a permanent resident of the United States. After completing seminary and post-seminary studies in Italy (in Tuscany and Rome), he was ordained a priest on April 2, 2005. He holds a Baccalaureate in Theology from the Studio Teologico Interdiocesano; “Enrico Bartoletti”; (Camaiore, Italy) affiliated to the Theological Faculty of Central Italy (Florence); and a Licentiate in Theology from the Pontifical Lateran University (Rome, Italy) with a thesis on Ecclesiology.
After 8 years of priestly service in the Diocese of Massa Carrara-Pontremoli (in northern Tuscany, Italy), Fr. Peter came to the United States in 2013 and has served in the Diocese of Grand Rapids as associate pastor at Sacred Heart of Jesus in Grand Rapids, and Our Lady of Consolation, in Rockford.
Before moving to the U.S., he has worked in priestly formation and co-directed spiritual retreats (especially the Ignatian Spiritual Exercises) and had the pastoral care of numerous parishes in northern Italy. Over the years he has integrated his formation with studies in Spirituality, Catholic Social Teaching, Ecumenism, foreign languages and other areas of personal interest. Most recently, he completed a three-year training in Spiritual Direction with the Institute of Priestly Formation in Omaha, NE. In addition to his native language, he fluently speaks 3 other languages (Italian, English, French), and has studied over the years Latin and New Testament Greek.
Besides the regular Masses each week, Fr. Peter enjoys visiting the community’s senior homes to bring Mass to those who aren’t able to come to Church. He also visits often with the students at the adjacent St. Paul School (you may even catch him in a game of kickball during recess) and takes to the sky as a recreational pilot when he has time off.