Staff Member: Fr. Michael Letteer
Fr. Michael Letteer
I would like to take this opportunity to introduce myself to you as you begin to see me lost and wandering around the Spring Grove area. I would like to give you a brief introduction to my journey and share a little more detail about who I am with you so that you will be able to meet me better (also, that way I do not have to remember what I said to which Mass group and I would not leave anyone out!).
I was born on my birthday in a single room shack somewhere on a deserted island . . . oops, I got the wrong story! I was born in Lancaster, PA and I have lived there for my entire life, except when I was somewhere else, like school or seminary or an assignment. I have two parents. Their names are Mom and Dad; otherwise know as Charles and Margaret. Every once and a while they will take a chance and actually be seen with me around the parish. I also have a sister, Mary Margaret and a nephew, my God-son, Damien.
I went to Manheim Township High School and attended the University of Scranton. Of the many majors that I had, I finally graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy and a second Bachelor of Arts in Theology/Religious Studies both with honors. Other areas of minor studies included: Political Science, International/Diplomatic Studies, Psychology, and Education.
I was accepted by the Diocese of Harrisburg in my senior year at university and then went to Saint Vincent Seminary in Latrobe, PA. I earned a Masters of Divinity degree and a Master of Arts degree in Sacred Scripture, both with high honors. While in seminary, I received a full scholarship to study at the Jerusalem Biblical Center, in Israel. During my time at Seminary, I also began my involvement with the National Jewish-Christian Conference.
While assigned to Bucknell University, I became active in the National Association of College and University Chaplains. This was an Interfaith group of chaplains. I was elected to serve on the Executive Board. This was a great honor since this was the first time in their history that a Catholic was elected to their Board. I have been active in many other groups and activities.
If you think that this kept me busy and out of trouble, it did not. With all this, I have learned several languages while in school and as a hobby. For eight summers I was able to teach at Ukrainian Catholic University and Holy Spirit Archeparchial Seminary, both in L'viv, Ukraine, and became the Spiritual Director for the summer program. I have been able to wander and lead pilgrimages many times outside the United States. I have traveled to Ireland, Austria, Luxemburg, Russia, Greece, Turkey, and Italy; and several times to France, Rome, Israel, Poland, China, Germany, Switzerland, the Czech Republic, Netherlands, and Ukraine. Places I would like to travel to are Egypt, Australia, Peru or anywhere that is new. In addition, I am certified as a Master Scuba Diver and Search and Rescue Diver, where I can enjoy some quietness and tranquility in life. I also enjoyed riding my motorcycle, but recently have given that up. I am honored to be a member of the Lancaster County Special Emergency Response Team where I work with the Police, Medics and Crisis Negotiators. I am involved with the Order of Malta as an Associate Chaplain and help with several of their activities. Every Spring I take time to journey to Lourdes, France to minister and assist the sick pilgrims who are coming to Our Lady and searching for healing. I hope to be able to make my Commitment to the Hospitalité Notre-Dame de Lourdes in the near future. I have studied and am also involved with the Eastern Catholic Churches and enjoy celebrating the Divine Liturgy. I played soccer and volleyball, but, most of all, I like to sit in a comfortable chair and watch other people run around playing various sports. You will find out that I am a Notre Dame fan and NOT a Penn State fan!
There are many more things that I could share with you, but I will save that until a later time. Again, “THANK YOU” for your warm welcome and I look forward to being at Sacred Heart Parish. Kyla, my dog and I hope to see you around. Please remember to introduce yourself frequently as it will be an adventure to learn who you are behind that mask!
– Fr. Michael Letteer