At the seminary

Meet the seminarians: Nicholas Di Iorio


Nicholas Di Iorio

Home Parish: Our Lady of Grace, Johnston

Age: 21

Seminary: The Seminary of Our Lady of Providence

High School: Johnston Senior High School

College: Providence College

Parents: Jack E. and Sallyann Di Iorio

Siblings: Andrew Kenneth (twin brother) and Matthew J. (oldest sibling)

Hobbies: baseball, football, piano, golf, cross country horseback riding and jumping

When did you start thinking about being a priest?

I began to seriously consider the priesthood as a junior in high school. My interest in the priesthood was always in mind but it was not until later in high school that I began to deepen my discernment of my vocation.

What would people be surprised to know about you?

I have a great interest in reading and being alone with a good book. Also that I play the piano and have a twin brother.

What were some church activities that you participated in prior to entering the seminary?

I served as an altar server for eight years, eventually becoming a Master of Ceremonies along with my twin brother, Andrew. I also volunteered and worked at many of my parish activities including feasts and parades.

What is your favorite Scripture passage?

The Scripture passage I am most drawn to would have to be First Corinthians, chapter 3, verses 14-18. It is here that St. Paul deals with the human person as an instrument of God and as being a part of God’s creation in such a way as to reveal his magnificence and his love.

Who influenced/inspired you to priesthood?

First, my parents had a profound influence upon my vocation but also the many priests that I have known in my life were an inspiration. The witness of so many has brought me to be the person I am today and the person I want to be for the rest of my life.

Did anybody invite you to consider the priesthood?

My pastor and other close friends who thought I was a good candidate for the priesthood

How did you come to know Jesus Christ and his call in your life?

I cannot describe one particular moment, except to say that from as far as I can remember in my early years, God has always been not merely present to me but truly an integral part of my life.

What were the spiritual events or activities that helped you develop and shape your personal relationship with Christ and his church?

My parents were a great influence. Also serving as an altar server at my parish played a significant role in shaping my relationship with Christ and his church. Both these have influenced who I am as a Catholic and as one who loves the people of God.

Were there any signs that led you to believe God was calling you to be a priest?

I think I began to realize that if my life was to have meaning it could only happen with the grace of God and the presence of Christ in my life. I have found God sending signs in my daily life with those, whether they be family, friend, or stranger, who he has placed in my life however, there was no great epiphany or miraculous event.

How did your family and friends react when you told them that you were entering the seminary?

The response of family and friends was positive. I think that in the course of my life they may have recognized something in me that reflects a calling to the priesthood. I am consistently humbled by the members of my family who are around me and the support they give me.

What was the transition like into seminary life? What did you imagine it to be, and in fact what was it like?

Seminary life was surprising to me. I imagined that everyone sat around a table and discussed only Jesus and prayed the rosary in the chapel every hour. The fraternity among the young men was a great support because they were just like me, normal men discerning a call to the priesthood.

Why is the priesthood so important today?

The witness that the priesthood offers the rest of society is very important. The so-called “scandal” of giving up one’s life for God and his people, is the most important thing for a priest. Many people have drifted from God, and the priesthood is an authentic path to finding him. Priesthood demonstrates that you can stake your entire life on God and be truly happy and fulfilled.

What advice would you give to a man who is “on the fence” about entering the seminary?

He should be open and honest with God and with himself.