Welcome Father Joseph Baker
"God sees not as man sees, for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart" 1 Samuel 16:7
He's already walked the halls and roamed the grounds for over a month but we are proud to welcome our new Parochial Vicar, Father Joseph Baker, here at Epiphany. It was the summer of 2007, on a vocations retreat when Father Joe reflected back on life and saw that he had always been pointed in the direction of priesthood. After spending parts of 2 summers becoming acquainted with a religious community in South America, he ultimately enrolled at Mount St. Mary's Seminary, in Maryland and was ordained a diocesan priest on May 23, 2015. Prior to coming to Epiphany, Father served as Parochial Vicar at St. Patrick's in Urbana and St. Mary's in Champaign and more recently at St. Mary's in Bloomington.
Father Joe grew up in Morton, IL and is one of six children. He is a proud graduate of University of Illinois-Champaign. Father enjoys reading books not only on Faith but American classics from secular authors such as Ernest Hemingway and Willa Cather. If you were to find him watching TV, you would most likely see him enjoying sports. Father is an avid fan of the Chicago White Sox, Illinois Basketball, and the USA Men's Soccer Team. As a youth he took up an interest in coins. To date, he has collected roughly 26000 pennies as well as the 50 state quarters. Although, he's still working on 6 Providences. He is also quite the plantsman. His cup runneth over with coffee, preferably from Dunkin Donuts but he's willing to try anything, just once. The most beautiful sight he ever laid eyes on, without hesitation, Machu Picchu.
Father Joe says "We are called to offer Christ to others and everything is for him. We share in the priesthood of Jesus Christ. It has encouraged me to be more aware and trusting of him. I aspire to know God, to love God, to serve God in this life and to be with him forever in the next. In times of difficult, high emotion, time constraint, whether yours or mine, I reflect on 2 Corinthians 12:9, My Power is Perfected in Weakness. I believe now more than ever we need to embrace that God sent his son to us. One can not fulfill oneself alone, we must search beyond our own existence and become theocentric to find true beauty.”
Not only is Father Joe our Parochial Vicar but he is also Chaplain at Central Catholic High School. If you missed him in the office, please feel free to send him an email at FrJBaker@gmail.com. We are very blessed and we hope you'll join us in giving Father Joe a warm welcome to our Epiphany Family.