|The Legionary members of the REVs and SEMs, with their supporters in the background.|
Once a year in the Diocese of San Jose, California,
priests and seminarians challenge each other to a friendly game
of basketball. The event is organized by the San Jose
Vocations Office to promote vocations and raise money for the
This year, on February 21, 2014, they played to
a crowd of about 4,000 people gathered in the Leavey
Center on the campus of Santa Clara University. Five Legionaries
of Christ participated in this 8th annual event, affectionately dubbed
the “REVs vs. SEMs” Challenge.
Among the REVs were parish
priests from the San Jose and San Francisco area joined
by Legionaries Fr. Brian Shininger LC, Fr. Timothy Lyons LC
and Fr. Joshua West LC. Playing for the SEMs were
seminarians from the dioceses of Reno, Sacramento, San Francisco, San
Jose and Monterey, as well as two Legionary brothers, Br.
Emilio Mitre and Br. Patrick O’Loughlin. Both are currently doing
their internships in Cupertino.
People from different parishes were cheering on
their pastors, while the Legionaries had support from Regnum Christi
members and the families from Canyon Heights Academy.
“It was a
fantastic opportunity to get to know and play with other
young men highly focused on their future priesthood in the
diocese, who are facing the same challenges we confront every
day to discern and remain faithful to Christ’s call,” said
Br. Patrick. “And showing the priests we live and work
with that we definitely have what it takes, at least
on the court.”
|The REVs plan their strategy.|
Both teams took the challenge very seriously. Preparation
for the game started a month ago with weekly practices.
Teams had coaches and personalized jerseys. Four referees officiated. Before
the game, each player was introduced, and the bishop of
San Jose led an opening prayer, followed by the national
anthem sung by a local Catholic school student.
The more experienced
REVs led for almost the entire game. But, with five
minutes left in the fourth quarter, the SEMs came back
and secured a 57-50 victory, bringing the trophy to the
Br. Emilio said participating in the game was “priceless, from
practice, to the side line, to the court, spending time
and getting to know these young men. You see at
once the diversity and the communion, the many colors that
form that one beautiful path to the priesthood of Christ.”
the challenge started eight years ago, the REVs and SEMs
|The SEMs are victorious.|
have split four wins each. After the game, the seminarians
and priests closed the event with a pizza party.