Welcome to the Diocese of Lake Charles
2018-2019 DOLC Seminarians

Thirteen Men Return To Seminary Studies

The 2018-2019 class of men continuing their discernment and training for the priesthood for the Diocese of Lake Charles is one of its largest and each man has been assigned to various seminaries by Bishop Glen John Provost. The Bishop, seen center in the above photo, is seated with the class. Seated with him are, from left, Andrew DeRouen, Joseph Caraway, Deacon Michael Caraway, and Levi Thompson. Standing, from left, are Michael Beverung, Alec January, Josh Page, Conner Chaisson, Samuel Bond, Treville Belcher, Lai Nguyen, Olin Scot Chester, and Garrett Broussard. Belcher, Chaisson, and Broussard are the three newest men accepted by Bishop Provost for entry into the seminary. Deacon Michael Caraway, who will return to the Pontifical North American College in Rome following his fall internship, was ordained to the diaconate in June. He will join three other men, at the PNAC - Andrew DeRouen, Joseph Caraway, and Levi Thompson. Deacon Caraway will be completing his fourth year of theological study while the trio are in their third theological year. They, along with Sam Bond, studying at Notre Dame Seminary College in New Orleans, are expected, with God’s grace, to be ordained next June to the transitional diaconate by Bishop Provost. The priestly ordination of Deacon Caraway is expected at the same time.

New seminarians, Treville Belcher and Garrett Broussard, both in First Year Pre-Theology at Notre Dame Seminary and Conner Chaisson in First Year College at St. Joseph Seminary College. Alec January and Josh Page are in their fourth year of philosophy study at St. Joseph. Also, at Notre Dame Seminary will be Michael Beverung in second year theology, Lai Nguyen in second year pre-theology, and Olin Scott Chester in first year theology. The men represent 10 church parishes of the diocese – Michael Beverung – Our Lady Queen of Heaven; Sam Bond – Our Lady of LaSalette, DeQuincy; Levi Thompson – St. Theodore, Moss Bluff; Joseph Caraway – St. Charles Borromeo, Fenton and its mission, St. John the Evangelist, Lacassine; Andrew DeRouen – Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception; Lai Nguyen, Garrett Broussard, and Treville Belcher – all Our Lady of Good Counsel; Deacon Michael Caraway – Our Lady Help of Christians, Jennings; Alec January – St. Philip Neri, Kinder; Olin Scott Chester – St. Joseph, Vinton; and Josh Page and Conner Chaisson – both Our Lady of Prompt Succor, Sulphur. Rev. Jeffrey Starkovich, the pastor of St. Pius X Catholic Church in Ragley, serves as Director of Seminarians and Vocations for the diocese, overseeing the education, training, and discernment of these men. Additionally, before their return to school, three seminarians – Olin Scott Chester, Michael Beverung, and Sam Bond - were accepted by Bishop Provost to Candidacy for Admission to Holy Orders. The Rite of Admission is celebrated when a seminarian has reached a maturity of purpose regarding his vocation and has shown the necessary qualities for ordained ministry. Through this liturgical rite, a seminarian makes a public intention of receiving Holy Orders and resolves to continue his preparation, in mind and spirit, in order to give faithful service to Christ and His Church.

MOSS BLUFF – Work continues, through the generosity of contributors to the Return to the Lord Capital Campaign, on construction of The Lodge, the multi-purpose center of all future activities for Camp Karol, nestled among nature and provide a serene environment for Catholic youth of the Diocese of Lake Charles seeking Christ, live Catholic, build community, and ignite the World.

Part of the plan for Camp Karol, originally designated at Phase 2, is the future construction of overnight housing facilities, namely 12 bungalows costing about $81,000.00 each. Through the generous contribution of $324,000.00 by Chad and Michelle Mudd to ongoing fundraising efforts, construction of four of those bungalows will begin soon at the site allowing the housing of participants on the grounds of Camp Karol with the opening of the doors of “The Lodge” and the kick off of programming in facility.

The youth retreat center will provide spiritual direction, faith-filled talks, and instruction in Catholic beliefs. It will light a spark in the hearts and minds of  young people. The motto of Camp Karol is Totus Tuus: Totally Yours.

“The significance of the name is that Camp Karol honors Saint John Paul II whose birth name was Karol Wojtyla,” said Deacon Brian Soileau. “In Polish, his native language, Karol means Charles. This underscores the strong link Camp Karol has to Saint Charles Center and Tabor Retreat House.

According to Deacon Soileau, the Associate Director of Saint Charles Center, the idea of a Catholic youth camp in Southwest Louisianan was first broached by a group of concerned Catholic men about their children. It came with the group’s purchase of Bear Island, a beautiful piece of land in Moss Bluff situated along the Calcasieu River, in 2008 and the group’s subsequent effort to raise funds and seek in-kind contributions to build a facility for Catholic youth.

Bishop Glen John Provost placed the project under the direction of Father Whitney Miller, director of Saint Charles Retreat Center. The donation of 89 acres of property by Camp Karol, Inc. along with related assets, to the Diocese of Lake Charles came in early 2016. The vision evolved into Camp Karol and expanded to include additional acreage near Bear Island.

Deacon Soileau noted a number of ways that individuals can help including Prayer - pray for the success of the Camp Karol project, the people working with it, and its mission. While praying, ask for the intercession of the Blessed Mother, Saint John Paul II, Saint Charles Borromeo and Saint Peter Claver;  Time – throughout the building phases, we will need volunteers. We urge you to consider giving your time and energy; Talents – whether your talent consists of carpentry, arts, cooking, etc., these may be needed for the completion of Camp Karol; and Funding – your monetary donations are greatly appreciated and will be used for the various phases.

Some of those phases included bungalow construction and furnishings, Bear Island equipment, boardwalk construction along with Chapel construction and furnishings.

Contributions can make any number of items possible to acquire including Lodge furnishings - folding chairs - $30 per chair (200 chairs); folding tables - $90 per table (20 tables); folding, rolling, dining room tables - $1,100 per table (12 tables); office desks - $600 per desk (2 desks); conference room table and chairs - $2,000 (1 set); entrance lobby furnishings - $10,000; sound system for conference hall - $12,000; kitchen/dining supplies - $10,000; landscaping - $20,000; and chapel liturgical supplies - $10,000.

Overnight accommodations made up of eight bungalows will be constructed at a cost of $81,000 each.

The Bear Island aspect of the project includes boardwalk - $50,000; clearing of Bear Island - $50,000; ropes course - $20,000; sports fields - $10,000; and wharves and canoes - $10,000.

Deacon Soileau said that if anyone has questions or would like additional information to contact him at Saint Charles Center, 855-1232 or 318-335-8979. Secure online contributions can be made by clicking here.

“Details about Camp Karol can be found on the Saint Charles Center’s website, stcharlescenter.com and you may also donate online at the site,” Deacon Soileau said.



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