As Dominican’s Chaplain, Reverend Jeffrey Montz, S.T.L. leads the school community in the celebration of Masses and offers spiritual guidance. From a young age he was involved in his family’s parish, Our Lady of Prompt Succor in Chalmette and credits his parents as, “the first ones to teach me how to pray and to ensure that I and my siblings were praying each night. As we grew and our attention span grew this became nightly reading from Sacred Scripture followed by praying the Rosary together. It also involved my mom and dad alternating Sunday mornings bringing my sister and me with them for an hour of adoration; my sister with my mom and me with my dad. Since I really do see a vocation as an invitation from God to a particular way of life, I credit my parents with creating the environment that allowed me to hear that invitation from God, and they had taught me how to pray so that I could continue to discern that call even after I had entered the seminary. In that sense, I already came into the seminary with a good habit of prayer because of the example my parents set for me.”
In 2004 Fr. Montz graduated from St. Joseph Seminary College at St. Benedict, Louisiana with a Bachelor of Liberal Arts. At Notre Dame Seminary in New Orleans, he continued his seminary formation and in 2008 received a Master of Divinity. That same year he was ordained a priest of the Archdiocese of New Orleans and assigned to St. Charles Borromeo Church in Destrehan. A year later, he was transferred to St. Francis of Assisi in New Orleans. The following year he was assigned to Divine Mercy Parish in Kenner where he served for three years until 2013 when he left for studies in Rome to pursue a licentiate in spiritual theology from the Pontifical University of Saint Thomas Aquinas, also known as the Angelicum in honor of its patron the Doctor Angelicus Thomas Aquinas. The Angelicum has its roots in the Dominican mission to study and to teach truth. This mission is reflected in the order’s motto, Veritas.
Fr. Montz described his time in Rome as, “My favorite and most fruitful experience of education in my life. I had wonderful lectures along with plenty of time to read and to pray so as to allow the material to absorb into my mind and heart,” he shared. “The style of education was not very heavy in assignments, so it afforded me sufficient time to explore spiritual theology in greater detail, reading especially from the writings of the saints. Most of my teachers were Dominican priests who were both good teachers and good, holy men who taught me just as much through their holy example as through their teaching.”
After completing his licentiate in the summer of 2015, he joined the full-time faculty of Notre Dame Seminary where he serves as Spiritual Director and Professor of Theology for the more than 100 seminarians. As Dominican’s Chaplain, he said, “I look forward to praying with you all and hopefully helping to awaken in your hearts that same thirst for God that others have helped to awaken in my own heart.”