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Turn to Jesus (Article)

When God Plants the Seed
Father Saúl López Orozco, LC (México)

P. Saúl López Orozco , L.C.
Fr. Saúl López Orozco , LC

I was born on October 9, 1978 in Atotonilco el Alto, Jalisco, Mexico. I am the fourth of nine children, 2 girls and 7 boys. My family was always united, which was an important factor in my vocation. In the house a simple and active faith was always present above all in my infancy. Today I happily remember praying the Rosary as a family in my parents’ bedroom. Some of the human and spiritual virtues necessary for a seminarian were lived daily in my family. I remember the demand and sacrifice of my parents to raise us nine kids. They taught us to work and in some circumstances they taught us learn that it depended only on us. The seeds were planted.

I wanted to help others
Since I was a child I knew that I wanted to help others in some way. I did not know the precise way to carry this out but I now see it as one of the seeds that later led me to think in the priesthood. I must have inherited something! I had an aunt who was a religious, Mother Yolanda of the Servants of the Holy Trinity and The Poor. She was from Guadalajara and spent her life working with the poor and sick. Even while she was sick she was able to console many priests. She passed away in 1991 with a reputation of holiness and today is a servant of God. One of her sisters is about to celebrate her 50th anniversary as a religious.

As I was studying in middle school a new student showed up. His name was Sergio and thanks to him I met the Legionaries of Christ. He was a joker, very friendly, and active. Characteristics similar to mine. We immediately hit it off. Of the three groups of friends he mixed in with all three. We ended seeing each other very often and did many things together: playing, studying (a little), and making new friends.

He had studied his first year of middle school in the Legion’s minor seminary in Leon, Mexico. I had wanted to get to know the diocesan seminary, San Juan de los Lagos, thanks to the friendship I struck up with some of the seminarians that studied there. I did my homework with them sometimes and went on hikes and played games as well. Sergio came to know that I was thinking of the priesthood and introduced me to a Legionary in the middle of May. His way of being, friendliness, and spiritual depth attracted me very much. We would get together with him to have spiritual talks, a little snack, and play sports. More than once I told the priest about my desire to be a priest.

For me it was clear that I wanted to enter a seminary to see if this was what God was calling me to. The priests that I had always known were and are saints, friends of the family, but this Legionary made me think deeper about
P. Saúl López Orozco , L.C.
the priesthood. My family did not know any of this and they were surprised by my way of being at this stage in my life. I then spoke to my mom to begin to prepare the way. And she did it well.

His life was not in vain
I finally entered the minor seminary in the middle of June. My family supported me all the way. On July 6, 1992 I began this adventure that God was beginning to write in my life. The big family that I left (58 cousins) I also found here in the seminary with my new companions: though I fought less, played a lot, my companions were my brothers, and my superiors have always been available to help me. I was happy. God has filled me with much happiness. In this stage I really lived a little piece of heaven, in spite of the Latin, Greek, and mathematics (later I enjoyed math more).

I studied first in the minor seminary in Leon and later in Ajusco, Mexico City. Sergio also lived one more year in the minor seminary in Mexico City but returned home and a few years later died in a car accident. I know that he is in heaven interceding for me and my vocation. God knows why I am writing this and why he has Sergio in his bosom. God took Sergio while he was still young but I can say that God used him so that I could be a priest. His life was not in vain, and the seed began to grow.

I began my novitiate in Monterrey, Mexico where I received the gift of the Legionary uniform, my cassock. A little later I was sent to Salamanca, Spain were I contined the novitiate. It is here that I fell in love with the priesthood and the religious life in the Legion of Christ, her ideals and her harmonious and integral formation. The self-giving and fervor of my superiors has always been a stimulation for me. In them and thanks to them I have found a precious treasure that is worth giving up everything to follow Christ. The seed continues to grow strong.

In the same house I also studied two years of humanistic studies. I enjoyed this period and it was a means to know Christ and human nature more. My vocation continued to mature. The seed that was sown was growing thanks to so many graces and blessings from God, from my “yes” and the help of countless people that were around me and those who prayed for me from afar.

When you are close to Him
Difficulties have always come and gone. Along this path I have had moments of less generosity but Christ is greater than our limitations. When you are close to him, life is always “full sail ahead.”

In 1998 I arrived to Rome to study Philosophy. It is here that I learned to love the Church even more. The continuous encounters with John Paul II helped me to love the model of the priesthood that he was showing us. From that moment on, God gave me the clarity to see that he wants me for eternity, that this little time here on earth is for me to give to him, and that he will take care of the rest. Father Alvaro Corcuera, with his patience, witness, and wisdom has helped me a lot. At this time the seed was fairly mature.

God writes the history of our lives in a mysterious way. In the years of my pastoral work God allowed me to perceive the reality and weakness of man. I saw over and over that only in God do people find rest, peace, and love. His love. I want to let God work in my soul as I continue to cultivate the seed that he planted many years ago. Now I want to help many people discover the same seed in their heart.

Father Saúl López Orozco was born on October 9, 1978 in Atotonilco el Alto, Jalisco, México. He entered the minor seminary of the Legion of Christ in Leon, Mexico on July 6, 1992 and later finished his high school studies in the minor seminary of Ajusco, Mexico City. He did his novitiate and classical humanities studies in Salamanca, Spain. He is licensed in Philosophy and has a bachelor’s degree in Theology from the Pontifical Regina Apostolorum College in Rome. He worked for three years in schools and youth clubs of the Legion of Christ in Puebla, Mexico and Mexico City. Presently he works with youth clubs and vocational promotion in Mexico City.

Translation of the vocation story published in the book "Vivir para Cristo"



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