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Roman Catholic Church in the state of hawaii

Diocese of Honolulu

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Catholic Living

Meet our Seminarians...

"You did not choose me, but I chose you, and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should abide..." (cf. Jn. 15:16)

Rev. Mr. Alfred Guererro (4th Theology, St. Patrick's Seminary)

My name is Deacon Alfred Omar B. Guererro was born in Honolulu, Hawaii, to parents of Filipino descent.   I am twenty-seven years of age and have a younger sister.  I was raised in Hawaii and attended public school all my life until I entered the seminary.  During my formative years, my church family was an important aspect in my life.  I have always wanted to become a priest since I was eight or nine years old.  During high school, I tried discerning a career in Forensic Pathology.  I was sure that after high school I would study to become a forensic pathologist or medical examiner.  God had other plans for me.  I started working for the Co-Cathedral of Saint Theresa, as the Assistant to the Rector.  My two years of working there made me aware of the different facets of ordained ministry.  Ministering to different people at different paths of their lives felt natural.  My own spiritual life grew during this period in my life.  I decided to enter the seminary in the Fall of 2009.  I went to Mount Angel Seminary in Saint Benedict, Oregon, for my undergraduate studies.  In 2012, I graduated with my Bachelors of Arts in a double major of Philosophy and Religious Studies.  Currently, I am at Saint Patrick's Semianry and University for my final year of seminary formation.  Bishop Silva ordained me a transitional deacon on May 27th, 2016.  In my free time, I like to read.  My interest is to go see the world, because it is big.  My favoriate food is a Vietnamese dish called Pho.


Mr. William «Pila» Tūlua (3rd Theology, Sacred Heart Seminary)

Aloha mai!  My name is William «Pila» Tūlua.  There is much to say in my life, but I was born in Cupertino,California, and lived my life in both California and in Kāneʻohe.  I attended Hawaiʻi Loa College.  Before Hawaiʻi Loa College, I became a Registered Medical Assistant, but before that, I was a monk for a monastic community in Oregon.  Originally I had aspirations of becoming a PA (Physicians Assistant).  I had attended St. Theresa’s Church from the time of Monsignor Benedict Vierra, but had my music ministry at St. James Church (Pālolo), Saint Augustine-by-the-Sea (Waikīkī).  I was all over the place, but my parish home was St. Theresa’s  I had always been a quiet person, and I believe God brought me out of my shell being an introvert to do something within the ministry.  I left the Medical field, and entered College.  During College I worked in the Tour trade as a bus/tour driver.  I believe God forced me out of the non-talking mode to finally speak to people.  Today, I still have a difficult time speaking to people, but it is much easier for me.  In 2010, after 23 years in the tour trade, I was accepted to the seminary.  I am at a seminary for older vocations.  People call it a “Second Career Seminary,” but I see a vocation.  Jesus had His apostles at different ages, and so God chose me to come in at an older age.  I love playing the blokflöte (recorder). I was an organist/pianist at some parishes for over twenty years, and a former choir director for four choirs.  I love to sing, and sang for the San José Opera, San José Choral Society, and the Honolulu Symphony Chorus.  I believe music is important, even as a hopeful pastor.  The pastor should know what is being sung, and make sure the theology is properly introduced to the faithful.  Learning languages are fun, but the old saying, “If you don’t use it, you lose it.”  I have much more to say, but if you see me around then please ask me!

Mr. Vincent Anh Xuân Vũ (3rd Theology, Saint Patrick's Seminary)

My name is Anh Xuân Vũ.  I was born in Việt Nam, the sixth of seven children born to Vũ Sơn Hùng and Phương Thị Nguyễn.  My early years were lived in Saigon, Việt Nam.  When I was twelve years old, I came to the United States of America.  I lived with my parents, four brothers, and two sisters in Honolulu, Hawaii.  I graduated from Radford High School in May 28, 2008.  I enjoy using my art skills in drawing; and sports such as tennis, basketball, and soccer.  I have engaged in volunteer work as a youth minister, and belonged to the Vietnamese Eucharistic Youth Movement (TNTT) at Co-Cathedral of Saint Theresa.

I am affiliated with the Diocese of Honolulu, and entered Mount Angel Seminary in the Fall of 2008. After five years of study, I graduated from Mount Angel Seminary as an undergraduate in May 12, 2013 with a degree of bachelor of art in Philosophy.  In the Fall of 2015, I began my pastoral year at Saint Catherine of Alexandria parish in Kapaa, Kauai.  I have had a great mentor, Rev. Anthony Rapozo, as well as a great assignment.  I have learned so much in the parish setting: working with parish staff, volunteers of different ministries, visiting the home bound, feeding the homeless, etc.  Currently, I am studying at Saint Patrick’s Seminary and University in Menlo Park, California.


Mr. Romple Emwalu (Pastoral Year, Saint Catherine Church, Kaui)

My name is Romple (Robert) Emwalu, known as Romple. I was born on May 24, 1982, and raise in Polowat Island, (Chuuk). I am a middle child of 20 siblings. My mother married my uncle, Celestino Emwalu a widower, after my dad Sostehnis Emwalu died in May 30, 1997.

 I went Nanataku High School and graduated in 2001. I entered the College of Micronesia-FSM in Pohnpei and received my Associate’s degree in Liberal Arts in 2004, and in 2007, I earned my teaching certificate, specializing in Elementary Education. I taught in Pohnpei at Palikir Elementary School for a year, worked with Habitat for Humanity and the Lion's Club for three years.

I moved to Hawaii in 2008 to further my education at UH Manoa and assist my family. I was involved in volunteer work with the elderly residents at the Mililani Mauka facility every Saturday. We clean, cooked for the residents, and took them out shopping.

I became active in parish life at St. John the Apostle and Evangelist Catholic Church in Mililani on Oahu, particularly working with youth, catechism. I am affiliated with the Diocese of Honolulu. I graduated from Mount Angel Seminary with Bachelors of Arts in Philosophy and Religious studies as of spring 2014 and enrolled at St. Patrick Seminary and University Graduate School of Theology in fall 2014. I am currently in my pastoral year at St. Catherine of Alexandria Kapaa, Kauai.

Mr. Dario Rinaldi (2nd Theology, Saint Patrick's Seminary)

I was born in 1993 in Eugene, Oregon to Steven and Laurie Rinaldi. I am the oldest child, with only one younger brother, Victor, who was born two years after me. When I was seven years old, my family left our life in Oregon to start a life here in Hawaii, on the island of Maui. We enrolled at St. Joseph Parish in Makawao and I and my brother were enrolled in the parish school, which was run largely by the Dominican Sisters of the Most Holy Rosary. I went to St. Joseph School up through sixth grade, during which time I received a Catholic education and developed a liking for Altar serving at Mass. It was that year that I would say God first called me, though I did not pay much attention back then. I graduated from St. Joseph’s in 2005 and was enrolled at St. Anthony Jr/Sr High School, which was run by the Marianists.

It was during my junior year of high school when I finally responded to the call. With the overwhelming support of my pastor, I began attending vocation retreats and spending a lot of time praying and pondering a possible vocation to the priesthood. I decided to enter seminary after high school and give it a try. And I’ve never regretted it.

It was after entering seminary that I would say I truly matured into an adult. Seminarians straight out of high school are rare these days, but for me it was the best decision. While at college seminary at Mount Angel, I was able to find out who I truly am. Having molded a spirituality from the Benedictines there as well as made lifelong friends, I received my Bachelors of Philosophy, and am now continuing my formation at St. Patrick Seminary.

Mr. Chance Billmeyer (1st Theology, Saint Patrick's Seminary)

Chance Billmeyer was born in Long Beach, California and grew up there and in Colorado before moving to the Big Island to join the faith community of Saint Michael the Archangel Catholic Church.  Chance graduated from San Diego State University with a degree in Graphic Communication in 1986 and in 1988 he attended the University of San Diego, Saint Francis Seminary and continued on to Saint John’s Theological Seminary in Camarillo, California.

In 1990, he left to work for Father Joe Carroll at Saint Vincent de Paul’s Joan Kroc Homeless Shelter in downtown San Diego.  As an executive director, he helped this burgeoning, state of the art, rehabilitation program grow from one shelter and soup kitchen to over five shelters, three kitchens, medical and dental clinics, job training facilities, elementary and high schools, and retail in four different counties in over two states.

Chance comes from a family of devoted Catholics that have served the church from the early 1800’s in Künzelslau, Germany.  In particular, the Billmeyer family has served as Grand Knights for the Knights of Columbus since 1870 and architect and builder for Catholic Churches in Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin area since the 1930’s. Chance loves music and art and is an accomplished oil painter. He loves bicycling, hiking, reading books, watching good movies, cooking, and being with friends.

Mr. Ese' ese Tui (1st Theology, Saint Patrick's Seminary)

Born November 25, 1984 in the island of American Samoa. Father is Siamani Kelemete Tui and mother is Miriama Aumaivao-Tui. Mother was converted to Catholicism through marrying my father. Father, who was born and raised Catholic became a seasonal catholic while my mom grew to a be a devoted Catholic. I have 3 brothers and 1 sister. My father passed away in his sleep in 2001 and my mother has been a widow ever since devoting herself to taking care of us, her children. My mother still resides in American Samoa till now.

The life of a Christian-Samoan family revolved around the schedule of the Church. A daily schedule for me growing up in American Samoa was school, home, chores and then church. Every evening at the sound of the village curfew bells, we gathered as a family at 6:00 p.m. and prayed Evening Prayer and the Holy Rosary. Our mother led the rosary and each one of us took turns in praying a decade. Growing up in American Samoa, I was part of the choir, altar server and served in our youth group at the St. Theresa the Child Jesus Catholic Church in Faga’alu and also served at St. Joseph the Worker Parish in Fagatogo.

I was a junior in high school when my father passed away in 2001. Priesthood came to mind at that time but was put on hold because I had to look after my family. Mother was the only one working at the time. I worked in American Samoa before I moved to Hawaii in 2006 and went to school for 2 years and then worked for another 5 years. I started to attend Our Lady of Perpetual Help Catholic Church in Ewa Beach and that became my home parish. It was in the summer of 2012 that the call of priesthood came back to me and then I talked to Fr. Scott Bush who then referred me to Fr. Peter Dumag, Vocations Director at that time. In God’s plan, I have been in seminary formation since that year of 2012.

Ace has worked as a Computer Technician in America Samoa for five years, and as a Home Manager at the Arc in Hawaii for five years.  He enjoys spending time with family and friends, and reading spiritual reflections.​

Preston Jay Castro (3rd College, Mount Angel Seminary)

Aloha, my name is Preston Castro – others may know me as PJ. I’m currently in my third year of Philosophy at Mount Angel Seminary. My re-conversion back to Christ after missing Church for seven years started back at my home parish, Saint Joseph in Waipahu. Before entering the Seminary, I was studying to become an elementary teacher, but because of the promise I made to my mother before she passed to the Lord, I told her I was going to fulfill her dreams of me becoming a Paramedic. Although I won’t necessarily attain the title “Paramedic” – I’m still going to be a paramedic in the sense of my becoming a “healer of souls” through administering the sacraments, and proclaiming the word, and love of Christ. I previously worked at Chuck E Cheese’s in Pearl City, as a Service Representative for 24 Hour Fitness which is also in Pearl City, and as a Sales Associate at Calvin Klein. Due to my mom’s passing, by the grace of God, I’m now living with my grandparents, Roland and Edith Pascua, who are such devoted Catholics and faithful followers of the cross. I have two younger sisters, Amber-Jhasteen (20) and Velaxis-Aries (14) along with my niece, Aria (4), and nephew Mikey (5 months). From the many times I’ve read scripture, the bible verse that always stuck to me is Matthew 5:16, “Let your light shine before men; that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.” As I continue on this journey towards the Holy Priesthood of Jesus Christ, I must remember that this life I live is no longer for myself but for Christ. ​

Kevin Clark (3rd College, Mount Angel Seminary)

Kevin Clark enrolled in the seminary at Mt Angel in August of 2014 alongside many other first year seminarians. It’s the path he took that is of special interest. You see, Kevin retired from the U.S. Navy in 2014 so he could become a seminarian. In Kevin’s words- God didn’t yell at him to become a priest- but he did give him many nudges.  Kevin was born in Buffalo, NY- the son of parents who were also in the military. So, military service was definitely a strong possibility in his future. He graduated from Princess Anne High School in Virginia Beach where his family retired. At the age of 19 he obtained his Associates degree in Electronics Engineering. Finding it hard to maintain work he started his own business. At age 24, he joined the Navy as an Electronic Technician. He was assigned initially to the USS Cheyenne – a newly commissioned nuclear submarine stationed in Hawaii.

First nudge: he was appointed as the Catholic Lay Leader on board organizing Sunday Mass Schedule and Catholic prayer groups. This began a series of nudges that would ultimately lead him to a religious life.

Next nudge: After being in Hawaii for three years Kevin was re-stationed on shore duty in Groton, Ct. A new friend that he met named Andy talked him into joining the choir while stationed there. Then he was invited to join the Knights of Columbus in Ledyard, Ct.. He has held most Council positions including Grand Knight.  He also joined the 4th Degree receiving his Knighthood in St. Mary’s church in New Haven, Ct. As a 4th Degree Knight, he has held most positions including Faithful Navigator and Faithful Admiral. Being a Knight has filled an important spot in his life and allowed Kevin to continue his faith journey.

Next nudge: Kevin was assigned back in Hawaii aboard the USS Los Angeles. Again he was asked to be the Catholic Lay Leader by the Catholic community aboard the ship. While the ship was in port he was a regular member of the Pearl Harbor Memorial Chapel and joined the choir. The choir director, Edwina Siu, asked him at his first choir practice: “Are you going to become a priest?”  That certainly got him thinking. People continued to recognize his strong Catholic faith and placed him in leadership roles where he could both practice his faith and encourage others to do the same.

Next nudge: Kevin was now fully engaged in his Catholic faith. Aboard the USS Los Angeles, he was given the honor of being the only person in the U.S. Submarine Navy to be allowed to carry and distribute the Eucharist while on deployment. This was a rare and one-time gift given specifically to him.

Next nudge: He was transferred to the USS La Jolla where he was again authorized to distribute communion as the Catholic Lay Leader. 

Next nudge: After his time on the USS LA Jolla he was transferred to shore duty in Hawaii at Communications Station Pacific (COMSUBPAC). Due to his new schedule, he could attend daily Mass and started doing so at St. Rita’s church in Nanakuli on the Waianae coast of Oahu in Hawaii. There he met Fr. Alapaki Kim who continues to be one of his great friends.

Finally, with his twenty-year tour of the US Navy coming to a close, he applied with the Diocese of Honolulu to start his new path in life. Bishop Larry Silva accepted him and in August 2014 he started the seminary at Mount Angel in Oregon.  Kevin was voted to the position of Deputy Grand Knight of the Saint Benedict council #15595 and attended this year’s annual K of C conference in Newport Beach, Or. He is an active Honor Guard member and is very enthusiastic about being both a Knight and a Seminarian.  Kevin has just completed his second year of college studies. He is triple-majoring in Philosophy, Religious Studies and Literature getting everything out of the school that he can. He is the only student in his class attempting this.

Arrion Rosales-Llantos (3rd College, Mount Angel Seminary)

I am from Kailua Kona on the Big Island of Hawai’i.  I graduated from Kealakehe High School in 2013 and began pursuing criminal justice at the University of Hawaii at Hilo.  I studied at the University of Hawaii for two years before beginning my seminary formation with the Diocese of Honolulu.  Prior to entering seminary I had the intention of enlisting in the United States Army National Guard to serve my country.  However my ultimate goal was to join my local police force and protect and serve the people of my community.  I began discerning my call to the priesthood towards the end of my second year at the University of Hawaii.  I would spend time in-between classes traveling to the local parish and asking God for guidance.  Eventually I had determined I may be hearing God’s call to the priesthood.  I have held several jobs that vary from a sandwich maker at Subway to a security officer for local and international security companies.  I am the only child in my family however I consider my cousins and my close friends as brothers and sisters.  Although I am the only child in my family, my friends and family continue to support my decision to pursue the priesthood.  I really enjoy bodyboarding whenever I have the time to.  Bodyboarding has become a way for me to set aside time to appreciate all of God’s creation and reinvigorate my sense of wonder.  I also enjoy astronomy and spending time sorting out the constellations that rule the clear night skies.  Astronomy has helped me discover a new way to connect with God.  Observing all that God created and pondering on how vast and infinite God truly is never fails to capture my sense of imagination.

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