Dear Pilgrim People of God, I rejoice that the paths of our faith journeys have converged at Santiago. Before we accompany one another on The Way, allow me to share something about where my trail started. I was born in Los Angeles in 1969. One year later, my family followed my grandparents to Mission Viejo. Our first home was off Trabuco Road. I received First Holy Communion and Confirmation at Saint Killian. My family still calls Mission Viejo and Dana Point home. I visit on Tuesdays, my day off, and enjoy the recreation offered by the ocean; swimming, fishing and sailing. I did surf for twenty years but had to take the wax off my boards because of bulging discs in my cervical spine. While this chronic condition is improving, it is a ‘thorn in my side that keeps me from getting too elated or proud’ and at times can cause me to be a little irritable. Please bear with me when I am not at my best. In answer to your question, yes, my dad tells me I am related to Al Capone. However, I am a fifth generation Californian on my mom’s French Canadian side of the family who migrated from Quebec to Fresno via the Klondike gold rush in Alaska. Many priestly and religious vocations have risen from my mom’s side of the family. Given my heritage, you will realize why I feel comfortable with saints and sinners. I have ministered to both over the last thirteen years as a parochial vicar at Holy Family in Orange, Saint Anne, St. Joseph in Placentia and Saint Vincent de Paul. I was mentored by the most devoted of pastors and have learned a great deal from them, both by the via positiva and the via negativa – what to do and what not to do! I received my priestly formation at Saint John’s Seminary in Camarillo, California. Prior to entering the seminary, I worked in technical sales after earning a degree in Business Economics from the University of San Diego. I enjoy learning and know there is much to discover about each one of you. Inevitably, we will encounter peaks and valleys on our sojourn together. Yet, because it is a journey of faith, I trust that all that happens will bring us closer to one another and to the one we follow, Jesus Christ, who is the way, in the truth to the fullness of life. I ask for your prayers. Please pray that I may fulfill my priestly mission by leading you, the People of God, in love, nourishing you by the Word and strengthening you through the sacraments.
Father Robert Capone