Path to Priesthood: Deacon Caetano Moura De Oliveira Is Christ’s Biggest Fan

Tags: Currents Brooklyn, NY, Faith, Family, Inspiration, Media, Queens, NY

By Jessica Easthope

His reasons for serving God are simple; Deacon Caetano Moura de Oliveira owes him everything.

“You know, my life before was a constant search for meaning, and with the Lord’s call, I found this meaning,” Deacon Oliveira said. “I remember once it clicked that it was a call from God, a horizon appeared in front of me. So what makes me sure that this is the thing for me is that I’ve been happy, grateful.”

He appears to have it all figured out, but if you asked Deacon Oliveira, life wasn’t always in tune.

“For the kind of kid that I was, I was a rocker,” Deacon Oliveira said. “You know, I had long hair, scratchy jeans. There was a shirt that I loved, of Metallica that I cut the sleeves. You know, my life consisted of rock n roll concerts and mosh pits. You know, and, that was my liturgy. Let’s say.”

Alcohol abuse and seeking his father’s approval, even after realizing it would never come, inside of a mosh pit, led to a distorted family dynamic. Deacon Oliveira was uninhibited and free to express some of his darkest emotions, not realizing they were holding him hostage.

“With mosh pits, getting drunk every Friday to the point of puking, that was the type of life I lived,” Deacon Oliveira said. “The mosh pit expresses a jail. You know, an anger inside that you need to express. What unites you to the other is the common resentment, you know, and that’s what the mosh pit expresses. We punch each other, but we are okay, because you need to lash it out. I need to lash it out. So we are fine. We’re in common ground, you know?”

While he was growing up, Deacon Oliveira’s parents were part of the Neocatechumenal Way. His rebellion would take a brief pause on Sundays when they came together in community.

That same community welcomed him in with open arms time and time again.

“What kept me alive? I would say, what saved my life, was to have a community. I could go there,” Deacon Oliveira said. “And I spoke about my sins freely with no filter. And I was not judged.”

Finally, at 20 years old, he saw that God’s love was relentless and more powerful than the anger and frustration consuming him.

“I’m praying this rosary. And I’m in a peace that I never experienced before,” Deacon Oliveira said. “And at this moment, it dawns on me what’s going on. I said, ‘My life is yours. You do what the heck you want with me.'”

All Deacon Oliveira needed to do was surrender, to feel total freedom.

“The freedom I experienced in that moment is like a it launched me on a journey,” he said. “The freedom that God gives you is true freedom. You know, because there’s no resentment. There’s no anger.”