Rev. Mr. William Evans

Dr. William EvansParish: St. Francis Xavier Cathedral, Green Bay

Birth Date: August 29

Seminary: St. Francis de Sales Seminary

Seminary Address:
3257 South Lake Drive
St. Francis WI 53235-3702

Theology IV

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Patron: Blessed Solanus Casey

 
 

Are you a dog person or a cat person?
Dog! Telling a cat “No!” is the definition of futility.

Tell us about a great experience you had during the summer of 2018..
The gift of ordination to the transitional diaconate would have been the clear choice until the moment I looked into the beautiful baby eyes of the fourth son and eighth child of a family as dear to me as my own, saying: “I baptize you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.” In those prime seconds for us both, two lives were changed forever.

Who influenced you the most to think about priesthood?
Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, began calling me to Himself from the moment He showed me the truth of his Real Presence in the Holy Eucharist. In time, that call became more specific and took on a distinct form: the image of a priest. Despite drifting far from the path of holiness for a time and preferring to travel in a direction of my own choosing, the image of the call remained, even when it was little more than an ember of light in my memory. With great love and patience, Jesus continued to knock until the door of my heart cracked a little; more than enough room for the Holy Spirit to rush in and fan that potent ember into the flame of an unqualified “yes.”

Pope Francis recently wrote a document entitled Gaudete et Exsultate on holiness. What does holiness look like to you?
First and foremost, holiness is a choice. Precious few souls have been given the gift of infused holiness. The rest of us must seek to “put on” holiness by emulating proven models of sanctity. The sure choice is Christ Jesus, regardless of whether we are male or female: “… let us live honorably as in the day … put on the Lord Jesus Christ” (Rom 13:13a, 14a). This sets the bar at the highest point. But who would be satisfied, really satisfied, with anything less? Intuitively, we know that mediocrity is not an ingredient in the recipe for holiness. Neither is the path of holiness anything but narrow, requiring our best informed intention and attention to remain surefooted: “… do not be conformed to the desires that you formerly had in ignorance. Instead, as he who called you is holy, be holy yourselves in all your conduct” (1 Pt 1:14b-15). In essence, holiness is a call to sainthood. There is no middle ground. We are either “all in” or we are not. Tepidity is incompatible with holiness: “So, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I am about to spit you out of my mouth [says the Lord]” (Rv 3:16). Choose to be holy!

What is your dream car?
Four-wheel drive and enough space to haul some gear are enough for me in a vehicle. The only car I actually think about from time to time is my father’s 1965, sky blue, two-door, Ford Thunderbird. It was the last car he owned before his death in 1975.

What aspect of your home parish is the most meaningful for you?
From museum to organ loft, sacristy to baptistery, St. Francis Xavier Cathedral stands in testimony to the enduring beauty of the Catholic faith in our blessed diocese.