Rogelio Raya

1st Theology

Seminary: Saint Charles Borromeo Seminary, Wynnewood, Pennsylvania

Ordination Date: 2024

Birth Date: March 5, 1997

Home Parish: Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Rocky Mount, NC

High School: Wilson Early College Academy

College: Wilson Community College

Hobbies: I enjoy listening to music. I especially enjoy listening to church chants and music in Spanish.

Who Influenced/Inspired you to Priesthood: I was inspired by my pastor, Fr. Tim Meares at Our Lady of Perpetual Help. As an altar server, I had the opportunity to watch him reverently celebrate the Mass. This helped me to fall in love with and appreciate the Catholic priesthood. I have also been inspired by Fr. Paul Brant, S.J., and his great love for the people entrusted into his priestly care. I hope to one day become a good priest like the both of them. 

What would you say to a young man who thinks he may have a vocation: If a young man feels like God may be calling him to the priesthood, then he should follow that call! Don’t ever be afraid to investigate or ask questions. There is only one way to find out if God is truly calling you to become a priest and that is to take the initiative and allow Him to guide you. Don’t be idle and not do anything about your desire to become a priest. Go! Make the move to enter seminary. You’ll never regret it.

Favorite Scripture Passage: “He said to them, 'Come after me, and I will make you fishers of men'" (Matthew 4:19). “It was not you who chose me, but I who chose you and appointed you…” (John 15:16).

Favorite Saint: St. John Vianney (Patron Saint of Diocesan Priests) and Blessed Elias del Socorro Nieves (Mexican Martyr from my grandmother’s hometown who was persecuted and killed for being a Catholic priest).

Anything else of note you would like to share with the Diocese: I have spent the last two years working at St. Therese Parish in Wilson, NC, with Fr. Paul Brant, S.J., as a Hispanic Ministry Assistant. I have greatly enjoyed that work, which has allowed me to get to know the people better.