From a Tiny Island to Do Great Things! - An Interview with Romple Emwalu
Story and Photo by Nicolas Facile
Romple Emwalu is a College IV student at Mount Angel Seminary and one of our new writers in the journalism class. He is with the Diocese of Honolulu, from "a tiny island in Micronesia." He is thirty-one years old, and he is studying to be a priest for those people who live in Hawaii but have different cultural backgrounds and need a pastor of souls that can speak their same language.
Why did you choose journalism?
During the journalism conference last year, I was touched by the testimony of one of the students. [Editor's note: This conference was part of the Theology on the Hill series that was offered last school year.] Then I decided to study journalism to be able to write my own article or small stories about my faith and to share my faith with others. I see in that an opportunity to enrich the people who need the Good News. Also, I think that it is a good way to improve my English, to write and speak better. The teacher is very helpful. I took several classes with her, and she helped me a lot with my writing skills. I'm very thankful for that!
Do you have work experience in this area?
Well, I have my personal journal! I write whatever I do there. I see that as a very good instrument for improving my writing skills, and also it makes me appreciate life, especially when I go back and read an old one and I can see my vocation story and how my life in God affects me today.
Did you write for someone else?
I do that, especially within my parish. I write short stories and share a little bit about my faith, and I put it in the bulletin. Journalism class will help me to share with the people, as I do in my personal life.
What do you think are your challenges in this subject and in this job?
I think the challenges are how to write, what kinds of words to use, how to ask good questions, and how to interview some people one-on-one. The interview is different; it's more formal than a simple conversation.
Which are your favorite topics?
I'm the most interested in the seminarian's life: how is our life and what are our challenges? Also, I'm very interested to write about seminarian's activities.
Do you want to comment something else?
Just one thing that I want to say about this seminary: this is a very wonderful seminary. Every person who comes to this seminary will really benefit his life. Speaking about education, it is very good because the staff is full of hard workers. They work with you to know and understand what you are doing.
About the spiritual part, here we have a really deep faith, different from the common life in the church. It helps you understand and keep a clear mind, to be able to relate well to the people, and at the same time, how to respect others. And of course, love! . . . They teach you how to love others in a very good manner and in a respectful way. That is what the church wants to teach us!