Student Spotlight- Anna Vacha, Graduate

Graduates for the Church and World

In December, the School of Theology and Seminary commissions the next wave of religious and lay professionals serving the Church and world. Meet our most recent graduate, ready for a lifetime of work and prayer.

Anna Vacha, Master in Ministry 

What brought you to Saint John’s School of Theology and Seminary?

My primary reason for pursuing a degree here at the SOT/Sem is Chaplaincy - a call which I felt in my heart from God and received encouragement to pursue from people in my life. I am pursuing a chaplain residency, and the manner in which my degree is put into practice continues to be part of the great adventure serving the Lord entails.

How are you spending your time now that your coursework is complete?

I am currently working with Catholic Charities in the St. Cloud, MN area. My work with that organization is in areas of Behavioral Health, in a role of a mental health aide caring for four adults with persistent mental illness. This work is a gift because I am growing in deeper compassion for others, and likewise I am becoming more patient when faced with my own struggles. The pivotal virtue of mercy has meant a lot to me while doing this work.

What are your future goals?

My intention is to complete the remaining three units of CPE (clinical pastoral education) during the next academic year from August 2019 through May 2020.

Living in relationship with Jesus and serving his people is how I envision the future. I am grateful to God for the vocational call to belong wholeheartedly to Christ. More specifically, I hope to belong to Christ and his Church as a consecrated virgin, which is one of the oldest forms of consecrated life in the church, and chaplaincy is a channel through which I can serve God and neighbor.

One hope for how you will use your degree and SOT/Sem experience.

Embracing the present. I’ve practiced this way of being throughout my time at the SOT/Sem, and I want to cultivate gratitude and wonder for the present moment more and more. I think the SOT/Sem really emphasizes community and inclusion and bringing these aspects into the society at large is important. Knowing that I can bring the presence of Christ to those I encounter makes each day more meaningful. The joyful invitation to love Jesus and help others know him has been more solidified in my heart and mind through my graduate education at the SOT/Sem.