A road less traveled

Ella Tallett

In the 1950s and 1960s, the Archdiocese of Dubuque had more priests per capita than any other state in America according to the Archdiocese of Dubuque. However, throughout the years, the number of priests has continued to decline due to a society that continues to become increasingly secularized, making this path more unconventional than ever. 

However, Kyle Tietz (X11) has decided to pursue this less traveled road to priesthood. 

Tietz grew up in a Catholic community throughout his childhood, which played a large role in motivating his interest in the priesthood.

“Growing up, I had always been involved at church with Mass and parish activities. Going to Mass on the weekend was a family affair and this routine developed into a great sense of comfort with both my home parish St. Pius X and the larger Church,” Tietz said. “There were priests in my life all the way through high school and into college. I saw their witness to the faith and got to know many of them personally; this set the stage for me to consider pursuing the priesthood.”

Tietz mentions how he was first asked to consider priesthood at the end of high school. However, at the time, he put this idea in the back of his mind and attended Iowa State University, majoring in Computer Engineering. Nevertheless, he still continued to grow in his faith throughout this time, later attending a priesthood discernment group and working to decipher what God was calling him to in his life. Through prayer and Eucharistic adoration, Tietz decided to take a leap of faith and applied for seminary school, entering into St. Pius X Minor Seminary in 2015. 

Tietz’s parents, Joyce and Randy Tietz, comment on their reactions to their son’s calling.

“We are humbled that God called Kyle to the priesthood and we are proud of Kyle for saying yes to God’s call,” Joyce and Randy said.

Although choosing to enter into the priesthood took some discernment, Tietz urges others to fully explore what God is calling them to be in their lives.

“Take active steps to learn more about the priesthood and if God is calling you. There is no better place to fully discern than in seminary. Stay close to Christ and let his love pour into you,” Tietz said.

Tietz was able to find fulfillment through listening to God’s voice, setting an example for those in the Xavier community to explore the roads less traveled in their lives. He is currently in his third year at Mundelein Major Seminary in Mundelein, Illinois and is looking forward to his upcoming ordination in 2021.