Nathaniel V. Romano, SJ, grew up in Southern California. He attended elementary school at St. Callistus Catholic Church, where he served on the altar, and after moving to Temecula, California, became involved at St. Catherine of Alexandria Catholic Church. After graduating in 1999 from Temecula Valley High School, Nate, who had considered a vocation to the priesthood from a young age, headed to the Jesuits’ Marquette University in Milwaukee. Almost immediately, he became involved in a campus discernment group and started working for the campus ministry office. He remembers being impressed by the Jesuits’ intellectual caliber and engagement with students and, most importantly, how they brought God into students’ lives. After earning a bachelor’s degree in history and political science in 2003, Nate put his vocational discernment on hold to earn a law degree at the University of Wisconsin Law School in Madison. As a young lawyer, he accepted cases from the Wisconsin State Public Defender, as well as private clients in the areas of criminal and family defense. He found it difficult to keep a professional distance because he wanted to do more for his clients and was soon discerning his Jesuit vocation once again. Accepted as a novice in 2008, Nate worked in an immigrant and refugee services program with Catholic Charities in Milwaukee and did a language and cultural immersion summer trip to Peru. At Fordham University in the Bronx, New York, he earned a master’s degree in philosophical resources while serving as a volunteer with the Bronx Defenders, a nonprofit that provides services to low-income people, and teaching and tutoring at St. Ignatius School, a tuition-free middle school serving the South Bronx. Missioned next to Omaha, Nebraska, Nate worked at the Creighton University School of Law’s Milton R. Abrahams Legal Clinic, representing low-income clients. In 2015, he was missioned to the Jesuit School of Theology of Santa Clara University in Berkeley, California, where he earned a Master of Divinity degree while working as a deacon at Most Holy Redeemer Catholic Church in San Francisco. After ordination, Nate will serve a pastoral year at the Church of the Gesu in University Heights, Ohio. His first Mass of Thanksgiving will be celebrated at the Church of the Gesu in Milwaukee. (USA Midwest Province)
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