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By Lukas Laniauskas, SJ
January 15, 2015
Lukas M. Laniauskas, SJ was born in 1984 to parents of Lithuanian-American descent and grew up in Cleveland, OH where he felt called to a vocation as a young boy. That call grew stronger over the years and in 2004 he entered the Jesuit Novitiate in Lithuania, professed perpetual vows in 2006 and returned to the states to continue his Jesuit formation. He is currently studying theology at Berkeley and is set to be ordained this coming June.
The alarm rings and everyone leaps into action, rushing to the scene to care for those in need. Working as the Berkeley fire department chaplain serves as a perfect parallel to my life journey as a Jesuit. I perceived the alarm of my vocation ringing at a young age. As a child, I used to serve the Mass and thought to myself that one day I would be a priest. As I developed through high school and college the alarm of my vocation only became stronger.
I entered the Jesuit novitiate as a novice (initial stage of formation) in Lithuania. Being born in a Lithuanian-American family, I was happy to return to the land of my ancestors. Upon completion of the novitiate, I professed perpetual vows (poverty, chastity, and obedience) and returned to the States to complete my formation.
|Messages of Encouragement|
|Here are a few of the many encouraging messages received for Lukas Laniauskas, SJ, in response to his “A Heart on Fire” email, which was sent to Jesuit Partners in January 2015.
“Lukas, your ministry is very admirable. Working with and spiritually supporting first responders is so important. They deal with horrific situations and have to make very tough decisions daily. A man like you can be God’s soothing strength.” — Steve Geis
“Your story about fire alarms was very touching. Prayerful best wishes as you get closer to ordination. I am so grateful to the Jesuits for all that I have received from them that I do want to be involved with your journey and contribute.” — Deacon Rodolfo Salinas
“As a Jesuit, you have so much to offer as an inspiring role model by sharing your life with others, especially in time of need, through your service in emergencies and your work with young people.” — Rich Ciccarone
“Having received both my bachelor and masters degrees from the University of Detroit Mercy, I have a solid grounding in philosophy and theology which has helped to shape my life. I think highly of the Jesuits and their emphasis on social justice.” — Mary Gibbons