Meet some of our Priests

Father Greg Hammes

Listen to my story:

 



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I first thought about being a priest early in high school. I had never really considered it until that time. What happened was nothing spectacular, but one evening at a religious education class at my parish, someone showed a video on apparitions of the Blessed Virgin Mary. It really got me thinking that not only were these apparitions really cool, but hey, what is God telling me or calling me to do? I started to think about what I should do with my life, and I started to pray more. I immediately begin to be drawn to priesthood. In high school, I was pretty unsure and rather afraid about it, so I mostly kept the idea to myself. I did go with my pastor to a visit of the Benedictine Monastery, but it just didn’t click with me.


In college the call continued to come back to me even when I didn’t want it. I studied Electrical Engineering at KU. So I would have spurts of thinking about priesthood and then doing whatever else I wanted to do. I did attend a vocation group at the St. Lawrence Center, and I was fairly active there. But I still was not ready to accept the call.


After I graduated and got a job with Garmin in Olathe, KS, I felt I had finally begun to settle down a bit and get rid of that idea about being a priest. I was dating and even thinking of buying a house. However, the call was relentless. I had joined a bible study group, and soon I was much more excited about my faith. I started re-taking a class offered by the St. Lawrence Center at nearby Lawrence, and I started getting even more excited about Catholicism. At my parish, I felt called to sign up for an hour of Eucharistic adoration each week (Thursday 12 AM). Further, I felt convinced of the power of the rosary and at the Pope’s and others recommendation, began praying it daily.
Finally, the soil was prepared to receive the seed and let it sprout, and as much as I tried to ignore the call it all came together then. My teacher of the Catholic class recommended that I do St. Louis de Monfort’s total consecration to Jesus through Mary to help know what God’s will was for me. I really felt hope that this would work, so I did it. I think what happened was that Mary took the fear away, and at the end I decided to investigate priesthood once again. I went on a visit to a seminary and absolutely loved it and wanted to be there. Finally, it felt like the doors were open and it was simply my free choice. I decided to pursue the call to be a priest. It was the best decision I ever made, though not the easiest.


Seminary further helped me discern that this was the right choice and that I truly was called. It wasn’t always easy, but it was some the best years of my life, as I met my best friends there and got to learn and be formed in my faith. Never before did I grow and learn so much. My ordination to the priesthood was the most powerful experience I have ever gone through. Even now I am humbled and awed that I am a priest, and that God has chosen me. Being a priest is very rewarding. It is also very challenging and there is so much always to be done. I feel very much Jesus' words, "The harvest is great, but the laborers are few." However, to work for Jesus, to be a priest of Jesus Christ, to make Him Present in the world, especially in the Eucharist and in all the Sacraments is beyond my comprehension but brings me great joy.

 

Typical Day
A day in the life…though every day is quite different.

5:20a.m. Alarm goes off. I make a quick cup of coffee (don’t call it an addiction).
5:30a.m. Begin with morning offering prayer. Look over readings of the day and prepare for daily homily. Continue to do this while I shower and get ready for the day.
6:30a.m. Parish daily Mass
7:00a.m. Greet people after Mass. Prayer of thanksgiving for the Eucharist. Go back to rectory. Get cup of coffee #2.
7:15a.m. Morning prayer with the pastor and anyone else staying in the rectory in our chapel with the Eucharist exposed. Spend a holy hour with Jesus. Do daily meditation.
8:15a.m. Get a quick breakfast of cereal and maybe a banana. Get cup of coffee #3.
8:30a.m. Pop into the office. Check phone messages and email. Respond to anything urgent.
9:00a.m. Off to my second job as high school chaplain.
9:20a.m. Arrive at high school. Check into office, see what is happening. Coordinate with staff there, etc.
10:00a.m. Visit religion classrooms. Speak briefly on the topic they are studying. Answer some questions. Do this sort of thing for a while in different classes.
11:30a.m. Lunch in Campus Ministry Office in high school with some students.
12:30p.m. Meeting with student committee to plan upcoming All-School Mass.
1:30p.m. Work on some details of Mass, get information to right people to prepare for music, environment, ministers, and worship aid.
2:00p.m. Drive back to parish.
2:20p.m. Check into office. Again attend to phone and emails. Do any needed office work. Drop by parish school.
3:00p.m. Chance to drop into chapel, do some prayer.
3:30p.m. A little down time. Go out for a ½ hour run. Clean up.
4:30p.m. Respond to hospital call—these happen at any time. Go anoint patient and pray with family.
5:30p.m. Back to parish. Time for Evening Prayer.
6:00p.m. Dinner with pastor and whoever else is living in rectory. We discuss what’s going on. I get advice on situations.
7:00p.m. Appointment with couple for marriage preparation. We go over a bunch of aspects of married life.
8:30p.m. Ah, finally some time to work on the big projects such as Sunday homily, my homily for the upcoming high-school all-school Mass, my weekly column in the bulletin, etc.
9:15p.m. My supposed bedtime. Try to go up to room by this time. Relax. Do night prayer. Maybe a little reading. Go to bed feeling tired, but rewarded.
DIOCESAN PRIESTHOOD

 

 

 

Name:
    Father Greg Hammes
Date of ordination:
    May 26, 2007
High School name & city
    Nemaha Valley High School, Seneca, KS
College major or career background:
    B.S. Electrical Engineering, KU; worked for Garmin as a software engineer
Your interests & hobbies:
    Bicycling, running, disc golf, playing sports, watching movies, reading
 

Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas

12615 Parallel Parkway
Kansas City, Kansas 66109
Phone: 913.721.1570 | Toll Free: 877.312.1578
Fax: 913.721.1577 | archkck@archkck.org