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Father John-Henry (Edward) Hanson, O.Praem.

Norbertine Fathers

In the early 1990s, at a pivotal time in my vocational discernment, I met Fr Al Scott at Our Lady of Refuge. Through his direction and friendship I experienced a re-awakening of the call I had heard from my earliest years – a call to follow Christ more closely in the priesthood and religious life.

Father Scott prepared me to accept this call by enlisting me in several charitable works which he used to organize with other parishioners: volunteering at the Missionaries of Charity convent in Lynwood as well as visits we paid to convalescent homes in the area.

But most of all, I am grateful to Father Scott for encouraging me – by word and example – to keep watch with Christ daily in the Eucharistic Holy Hour. He not only recommended this important practice to me, but introduced me to audio recordings of Bishop Fulton Sheen who further enkindled in me a desire to make Eucharistic adoration an indispensable part of my life. I can say that it was especially before the Blessed Sacrament that I found my vocation.

I entered St. Michael’s Abbey of the Norbertine Fathers in southern Orange County in 1995 (www.stmichaelsabbey.com). After approximately ten years of religious formation, I completed my theological studies in Rome at the Pontifical University of St Thomas (Angelicum) in 2006. On June 30 of that same year I was ordained to the priesthood.

Since then, my ministry has included education (at St Michael’s Preparatory School), chaplaincy to the Norbertine Nuns of Bethlehem Priory (Tehachapi, CA), juvenile detention ministry, retreat work throughout the country, as well as regular contributions (homilies and articles) to the website of the St. Josemaria Institute (www.stjosemaria.org), whose mission is to promote the spirituality of St. Josemaria Escriva.

I am grateful not only to Fr Al Scott but to all of the good priests and people of Our Lady of Refuge who have supported me with their prayers and encouragement. May God bless and reward you all for your goodness!