Mass a Peaceful Experience – Clinton Zadroga

2001 News

 Rev. Clinton P. Zadroga is the son of Pamela Ann Zadroga Bassett of Greenock and the late Paul Allen Zadroga. He received a bachelor of arts degree in philosophy and music from Duquesne University.He is a 1992 graduate of Elizabeth Forward High School. In 2000, he earned a master of arts degree from Saint Vincent Seminary. In 2001, he received a master of divinity degree from the Seminary.

This article is from The Pittsburgh Catholic, June 1, 2001.

By John Franko

PITTSBURGH — Clinton Zadroga was studying music education when he decided to answer a call from the Lord.

Baptized a Catholic, but raised in the Presbyterian faith, he always had a desire to take a look at the church. The opportunity came when he attended a Newmann Center Mass with a friend during his freshman year at Indiana University of Pennsylvania.

“It was a surprisingly peaceful experience,” he said.

He visited the library to read up on the Catholic faith and gradually grew closer to its practice. He was confirmed and received the Eucharist for the first time during the Easter Vigil in 1993.

Zadroga soon began to lose interest in teaching music. His limited involvement with the church was rewarding, and he wanted to do more for his faith. He met Father Edward Burns, the then rector of St. Paul Seminary, who encouraged him to explore the possibility of the priesthood.

He then took what he discussed and turned to prayer. “I just sensed the Lord was telling me ‘Be not afraid,'” he said. “I was surprised at their goodness and how much they made me feel part of the parish.”

He pointed out he was touched by the opportunity to work with eighth-grade religious education students, a task he initially dreaded. “It became the highlight of the weekend,” he said.

Father Zadroga pointed out that no amount of seminary formation can prepare someone completely for the priesthood, but he said he was eager to begin his priestly duties. He was particularly pleased to be able to offer the sacrifice of the Mass.

He encouraged those considering a vocation to have faith that God will give them the gifts they need.

“Don’t close that (vocation) out as a possibility because of a sense of unworthiness, or a sense that it’s not for you,” he said. “God’s call comes with grace, and with that grace comes a sense of amazement of what can happen.”

He is the son of Pamela Zadroga Bassett and the late Paul Allen Zadroga.