Chase Hilgenbrinck was a soccer player for the New England Revolution. He played for them after a long stint playing in Chile.
That’s when he left his soccer career to begin a different calling:
Hilgenbrinck accepted the calling… to enter a seminary, where he will spend the next six years studying theology and philosophy so he can be ordained as a Roman Catholic priest.
“It’s not that I’m ready to leave soccer. I still have a great passion for the game,” he said in a telephone interview. “I wouldn’t leave the game for just any other job. I’m moving on for the Lord. I want to do the will of the Lord, I want to do what he wants for me, not what I want to do for myself.”
Hilgenbrinck had his initial interview for the seminary last July, followed by a rigorous application process. There were written tests, personality screenings, background checks, fingerprinting and meetings with three different psychiatrists to make sure he had the right temperament to be a priest.
At first, he told no one, lest they influence him one way or the other: “I really wanted it to be a decision between me and God,” he said.
There were more tests in January, and in March Hilgenbrinck learned he had been accepted to the seminary. A few weeks ago, he met with [New England vice president of player personnel Michael] Burns and Revolution coach Steve Nicol.
“We weren’t exactly sure what he was going to say, because it’s not what you usually hear,” Burns said. “When he said it, I was glad. I was glad for him. This is something that he clearly wants to do, and we wish him all the best.”
I’m shocked. Who knew priests had background checks?!
Anyway, say what you will about him attending Seminary. When was the last time you left your well-paying job to pursue something so radically different?