Catholic Diocese of Spokane, Washington



From the

Official News Magazine of the Diocese of Spokane

Deacon Eric Meisfjord, Editor
P.O. Box 48, Spokane WA 99210
(509) 358-7340; FAX: (509) 358-7302


Vocations 2007: Spokane’s seminarians bring broad backgrounds, life experience

the Inland Register

(From the Oct. 4, 2007 edition of the Inland Register)

Jeffrey Core was born in Great Falls, Mont. His family moved to the Diocese of Spokane shortly after his birth and Jeff grew up in St. Patrick Parish, Walla Walla. Jeff holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in both Philosophy and History from Holy Names College in Oakland, Calif., and was director of campus ministry at the University of Great Falls prior to joining the priestly formation program. Jeff commenced theology studies at The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C., in September 2007.

Ricardo Flores Mendez was born in Totolmajac, Mexico. After growing up in that small and beautiful place amongst a large family, Ricardo worked briefly in the United States before beginning religious formation at Seminario Hispano de Santa Maria de Guadelupe in Mexico City. Ricardo came to the Diocese of Spokane in 2003 and completed English as a Second Language studies at Gonzaga University prior to beginning college studies at Mount Angel Seminary in St. Benedict, Ore., where he is now a third year student.

The son of an Air Force family, David Gaines was born in Colorado Springs and lived in many places throughout the world before his family settled in Cheney. David will complete work on a Religious Studies degree at Gonzaga University this year. He is a talented singer and musician and is well known for his work with the popular Gonzaga group, “Big Bing Theory.”

Jason Hiner is a native of Virginia Beach, Va., although he spent his teen years in California and is a graduate of Temple City High School in Pasadena. Jason served the L’Arche (residential facility for people with mental disabilities) community in Spokane prior to joining the Bishop White Seminary community. He graduated from Gonzaga University in May with a degree in Philosophy. He recently began theology studies at Mount Angel Seminary, St. Benedict Ore.

David Kuttner is a native of Spokane and a member of St. Thomas More Parish. A graduate of Eastern Oregon State College, David worked as a teacher and baseball coach before joining the formation program. He is currently in his third year of theology studies at the Pontifical North American College in Vatican City.

Matthew Larsen was born in Deer Park. After attending local schools, Matthew graduated from Gonzaga University with a law degree and worked as a public defender before joining the seminary community. Matthew is currently in his third year of theology study at The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C.

Kris Leistritz is currently in his second year of theological studies at the American College of the Immaculate Conception, Catholic University of Louvain, Leuven, Belgium. Kris has a Bachelor’s degree in Philosophy from Gonzaga University. Kris was born and raised in the Tri-Cities area, where his family belongs to Pasco’s St. Patrick Parish.

Jeffrey Lewis is a native of Spokane and a graduate of Mead High School. He earned both Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in Business from Washington State University before entering the priestly formation program. Another talented musician, Jeff has played trumpet in parishes throughout the Diocese. Jeff recently began theological studies at The Theological College at the Catholic University of America, where he received a Father Michael J. McGivney Vocations Scholarship from the national Council of the Knights of Columbus.

Deacon Matthew Nicks, a Spokane native, recently returned to the Pontifical North American College in Vatican City to complete his fourth year of theology study. Deacon Nicks is the recipient of a Bishop Thomas V. Daily Vocations Scholarship from the national Council of the Knights of Columbus. He was ordained a deacon on April 28, 2007 at Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Parish after completing a pastoral year there, and is scheduled to be ordained to the priesthood on June 27, 2008.

Lutakome Nsubuga comes to the Diocese of Spokane after growing up in his native Uganda, where he served as a teacher before coming to the United States in 2000. After working in the United States, Luta earned a Biology degree from Washington State University before joining the Bishop White Seminary. Luta is currently in his second year of theology studies at the Theological College at The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C.

Kevin Oiland recently began his third year of theological studies at Mount Angel Seminary, St. Benedict, Ore. Kevin was born in Spokane, where he is a graduate of St. Patrick School and North Central High School. Kevin recently completed a pastoral year at St. Augustine Parish in Spokane. He is scheduled to be ordained a deacon on May 17, 2008.

Siloé Perez Gomez is currently studying as a sophomore at Gonzaga University, after completing the English as a Second Language program there. Siloé is a native a Vera Cruz, Mexico and previously studied at the Seminario Hispanio de Santa Maria de Guadelupe in Mexico City. He spent the past summer doing pastoral work with the Hispanic community in Oroville, Wash.

Tyler Smedley recently joined the Diocese of Spokane formation program following graduation from Gonzaga University with a degree in philosophy. Tyler was born in Vancouver, Wash., but spent many of his growing years in Eastern Washington. He has recently begun theology studies at The Theological College at The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C.


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