Ben Thomsen


Mundelein Seminary
1000 East Maple Avenue
Mundelein, IL 60060

School: Mundelein Seminary
1000 East Maple Avenue
Mundelein, IL 60060


I was the first of two children born to a fairly normal American family.  Though born in Decatur, Georgia, I grew up in Japan, Australia, and back in the States in Georgia in the Dunwoody area.  I left the States when I was 5 and returned when I was around 9.

What are your hobbies and interests?

Philosophy, Painting, Brewing, and Weightlifting.

What is one of your favorite scriptures?

John 1:9. John’s Prologue in general is one of my favorite parts of all Scripture.  It reveals who the Son is.  This revelation of being the Logos was something many of the Gentiles and Jews were seeking to understand and their understanding was coming to a climax at the very moment the Logos took flesh as Jesus Christ. John 1:9 is a mysterious verse in this that suggests the Logos has always been shinning in the minds of all humanity.

Who is your favorite saint and why?

St. Anselm of Canterbury.  He helped me appreciate the link between faith and reason.  Specifically his works Proslogion and Cur Deus Homo were of great help.

In a nutshell, what is your vocation story? How did you feel called to the priesthood?

I am a convert to the faith.  Though raised as a sort-of-Episcopal as a kid, my family stopped going to Church and I eventually identified as an atheist for a brief period.  Slowly I came back to theism, and through reading the Gospels and studying philosophy, God led me to Catholicism in College. The call was present since that time and after practicing law for a few years, I entered seminary.

What is seminary life like for you?

It is like college but with a more structured spiritual life while being surrounded by people dedicated to the Faith.  Think of it as a combination of a studying theology at a regular college with a sprinkling of monastic and parish life.

What do you look forward to about being a priest?

Teaching, preaching, and confessions.

What advice do you have for other guys thinking about the priesthood?

Consider yourself at the end of your life.  Looking back, what do you think YOU were supposed to do with your life for God?  This is not exactly a normal general moral question.  It is not what humanity in general should do, but YOU yourself.  That may help clarify your call so you do not look at what you do with your life as just the best thing generally, but that which God wants for you specifically.