Seminarians Jacob McDougall and Nathan Ribb were admitted as candidates for Holy Orders by Bishop Thomas Daly during the Candidacy Mass at Bishop White Seminary in Spokane on April 18, 2024. McDougall is a seminarian for the Archdiocese of Portland in Oregon and Ribb is from the Diocese of Boise.

During the Mass, Bishop Daly individually called upon McDougall and Ribb, echoing their personal callings from God to the seminary. In a similar manner to engagement prior to marriage, admission to Candidacy marks a key moment in the discernment of these seminarians by publicly expressing the resolution shared by these men and their bishops that they are called to be priests for their dioceses. To help denote their elevated commitment to the Church and priestly formation, McDougall and Ribb began to wear the clerical collar as their official seminarian attire at Bishop White Seminary at the Candidacy Mass.

The Candidacy Mass was a grand affair, with Bishop Daly as the main celebrant and a choir made of Cor Christi seminarians. Father Daniel Barnett, the rector of Bishop White and vice rector Father Kyle Ratuiste were also present, concelebrating at the altar. Due to the chapel’s small size, Bishop Emeritus William Skylstad and other priests who serve Bishop White Seminary concelebrated from the pews, including Fathers Patrick Barraza, John Murphy, SJ, Kenny St. Hilaire, Paul Vevik, David B. Gaines, Brian Sattler, and Michael Maher, SJ. Fathers Peter Julia and Matt Libra from the Archdiocese of Portland in Oregon were also among the concelebrants. Father Libra the pastor of McDougall’s home parish and Father Julia, the vocations director for Portland.

These events harbinger the end of their time at Bishop White Seminary. These men will finish their studies in Spokane over the coming weeks and graduate in May. Then, they will go their separate ways to major seminary. McDougall will continue studies at St. Patrick Seminary in Menlo Park, California, and Ribb will continue at St. Paul Seminary in St. Paul, Minnesota.