Fr. Mike Schmitz Fosters Faith in the Midst of Chaos

There are so many things I miss about school from before quarantine that it would take me hours to name them all, but perhaps the thing I miss most is the chapel. Whether I was going to Mass, confession, adoration, or just stopping by to say “hi” to Jesus, the chapel was a place of quiet and serenity that allowed me to step away from the craziness of the day and spend a few minutes with God.

At the beginning of quarantine, without the luxury of attending daily Mass or paying a visit to the Blessed Sacrament whenever I wanted, I had a hard time keeping up a strong relationship with God. I found myself less motivated to pray, and when I was praying, I got distracted really easily. I think something people don’t realize is that a strong relationship with God is like all other relationships: it requires a lot of effort. Often, the more time that goes by without talking to friends, the weaker one’s relationship with them grows. The same applies to a relationship with God. Since I wasn’t seeing Him everyday, growing closer to Him got a lot harder. I needed a form of motivation that would help me enjoy prayer again. So I decided to start watching videos from a Youtube channel called Ascension Presents (check out their channel here!) and in particular, videos made by a priest named Fr. Mike Schmitz.

Fr. Mike is AMAZING. He’s funny, engaging, and he is able to talk about the most controversial topics with great compassion and clarity while still hitting home about what Catholics really believe. Now, whenever I don’t feel motivated to pray or if I get distracted during prayer, all I have to do is look through Fr. Mike’s videos and watch one or two (or ten) that resonate with me. 

Another reason why I love watching Father Mike’s videos is because he genuinely seems to love the Catholic faith. I know what you’re thinking, “Um Alanna, he’s a priest, obviously he loves his faith. Why would he become a priest if he didn’t?” I totally get that, and I do believe that most priests really love the Faith, but not as many of them are as gifted at leading others to fall in love with the Faith. The comment sections of Father Mike’s videos are full of people  sharing stories about how they didn’t believe in God and just happened to come across his videos. They were so attracted to the Faith that they decided to attend Mass. In some of the stories I’ve read, some of these people are now in RCIA or even in the seminary. The joy that Father Mike radiates is infectious which is why I turn to his videos even if I just want something to watch that will take my mind from the stresses of everyday life.

 The thing I love about watching his videos, as opposed to other forms of entertainment on the internet, is that I don’t feel as though I’ve wasted hours of my time afterward. They’re not just something that only makes me happy while I watch it. Watching these videos also motivates me to pray or spend some time away from my computer. 

So, if you’re looking for a good Sunday Mass to watch, you want motivation to pray, or you’re curious about the Catholic faith and want to learn more, you should definitely check out Father Mike Schmitz — and everyone at Ascension Presents. Believe me, you will not regret it! 

Also just an FYI, here’s his latest video. WOW, it blew my mind!


Alanna Hyatt ’22, Sports Co-Editor