Fr. Daniel Nolan, FSSP, was ordained in Omaha, Nebraska, on Saturday May 31, 2014, and offered one of his first Masses in his home state of Oklahoma, at St. Monica Catholic Church in Edmond. Father Nolan was assisted by his brother, Fr. Justin Nolan, FSSP, with Fr. Christopher Pelster, FSSP, assisting as Deacon.
Father was born June 10th, 1976, in Spokane, Washington. In 1982 his family moved to Oklahoma and they have been there ever since. He is the second oldest of thirteen children, four of whom were adopted.
Father was educated in the Seton Homeschool program from the 2nd – 12th grade. The strength of the homeschooling curriculum allowed him to make advances later in life that he felt might otherwise have not been possible.
In July of 1996 he entered the United States Naval Academy, and it was there that he first began to think about a priestly vocation. Father had always looked at the priesthood as something which no one really wanted to do, but somehow, through incomprehensible grace, managed to endure. But he figured every young Catholic man had at least the duty to consider it, so consider he did. At the time, he gave God a 1% chance.
Four years later he graduated with a BS in Systems Engineering and received a commission as a 2nd Lieutenant in the Marine Corps. After training as an infantry officer, he was stationed in Camp Lejeune, NC, and over the next three years deployed to Okinawa, Cuba, Kuwait, Iraq, and the Republic of Georgia. During this time his faith in God was both tested and strengthened in a variety of ways. His thoughts about the priesthood continued to grow as well, and by now he was giving God a 50/50 chance.
In May of 2004 Father was assigned to the Oklahoma City Military Entrance Processing Station, and it was during this time that he began to attend the Traditional Latin Mass. He became convinced, by the beauty and power of the traditional liturgy, that this was the future of the Church. He looked upon life as a spiritual battlefield, and if priests were God’s army, then FSSP priests were God’s Marine Corps. He joined the Marines for a reason, and he joined the FSSP for a similar reason. If he was going to fight, he wanted to fight in the best unit, the hardest unit, the toughest unit.
Father Nolan separated from the military in August of 2006 as a Captain, and, after a year of discernment and prayer, finally entered the seminary in the fall of 2007. As he looks back, he realizes that the call to the priesthood was a call to fulfillment; a call to happiness. There have been, and will be trials and crosses, but if well endured, they are always redemptive.
As Father says, “God had a plan for my life, and thank God I followed it!”