Fr. Scott Schilmoeller-- Associate Pastor
My name is Fr. Scott Schilmoeller. I am very excited and overjoyed to be your new associate pastor! There have been many years of preparation that have led me to this moment, and I am very pleased to share my first experiences of Priesthood with Sacred Heart Parish.
It was nearly 10 years ago that I had a profound encounter with Jesus, and experienced his love in a profoundly personal way. From childhood, I had heard the tag lines "God loves you" and "love your neighbor as yourself". However these phrases often seemed too abstract and rather distant from my day-to-day lived experience. I have never considered myself to be anything other than Catholic, but I have often considered many aspects of my life more important than the faith. That was until He made it personal. That's right PERSONAL.
It was during adoration at a retreat in college when something just seemed to click. There was nothing specifically profound that I was doing at the time; I was just sitting there. (I didn't know what to do on a retreat, I was a college student for Pete sake!) However, while I was sitting there I kind of turned a little bit inwardly toward Jesus and gave him a chance to have all of my attention. A peace slowly captivated my heart and I found myself in conversation with God! He asked me a question which I will never forget, "why are you trying so hard to make something of yourself?"
You see at this time I had slowly built my life around: myself. I had my own interests, my own priorities, my own career plans, my salary, etc... and it was exhausting. Jesus allowed me in this moment to have a glimpse of a lie I had begun to believe, which was, "I have to hold everything together in my life, and if I don't, it will all fall apart." He then said to me, "Don't you know you are loved. You can rest. I know you. I have known you your whole life. I am what you long for." ... and I rested.
This experience has filled me with life and has affected everything. It has affected the way I participate at Mass, how I treat others (and myself), how I spend my free time, and eventually my future vocation. After receiving love from Jesus, I couldn't help but want to share it! I stayed in relationship with him, and eventually he called me to serve him in a radical way by becoming a Priest. He also let me in on a little secret... this kind of relationship isn't just for priests! It started for me when I was a troubled college student. It is Jesus' desire for everyone to have a deep and living relationship with Him. I hope that I may aid in encouraging and inspiring relationships with Jesus during my time at Sacred Heart.
That is a bit of my story, and I am pleased to continue my journey in faith with the community of Sacred Heart Parish. I love celebrating mass. I love hearing confessions, and I love meeting families. I pray that God provides me with the grace to live up to the title 'father' (especially for those who are older than me and could me my dad or grandparents). God bless, and see you all around!