Brian Beal grew up in Hermitage, PA and says he has admired priests since childhood. He attended Ohio Dominican, and has undergraduate and master’s degrees in theology. Brian ran two non-profits in Pennsylvania; Pro-life of Mercer County and Missionaries of Purity.
“I didn’t start seriously considering the priesthood until my mid 20’s,” says Brian. “But the doors didn’t open for me until I was 37 and then I made my move toward the seminary.”
Brian reached out to Father Noble who considered him a strong applicant. Bishop Campbell declared that Brian only had to attend four years of seminary due to his multiple degrees in theology and work experience. He attends Pope St. John Seminary in Boston, which is specifically for priesthood candidates age 30 and above.
“I am 41 years old and considered a second career guy. I am so glad to be given the chance to share the news that older, experienced fellas out there can consider the priesthood like me.” Brian added that 20% of the 70 men he studies with in Boston were married before and either widowed or received an annulment before entering seminary.
“Next month’s ordination is on my mother’s birthday, which is double cause for celebration. I am prayerfully excited about getting ordained and being assigned a parish in the Columbus Diocese.”
Favorite Activities and Something Brian Dreams of Doing: “I like to hike the big mountains and would like to climb as many of the highest peaks in the continental U.S. as I can.” Brian has already hiked the Presidential Range in New Hampshire and Vermont, the north rim of the Grand Canyon to the Colorado River and back up, the 36 mile perimeter of Oil Creek State Park, Mount Rainier to Camp Muir, and to the famous Observation Point in Zion National Park.
Favorite Meal: London broil roast beef brisket over sourdough bread with gravy.
Favorite Ice Cream: Coffee.
Favorite Music: Classical, instrumental, harp, chant. “Bach is my favorite.”
What does he miss about home: “I miss seeing my mom on a regular basis. She lost her husband and a daughter this year so it has been tough.”Things about Brian that no one would guess: “I am 6’5 ½“ tall or as I like to say, 5’17 ½” but I was one of the shortest guys on my grade school basketball team. Now I am large and in charge!” Brian was also a professional tennis instructor and had some big wins over a #2 ranked NCAA player and a world ranked singles player. Oh and don’t forget his 135mph serve!