Michael N. Manalastas, SJ, was born and raised in the “Garden of Eden,” a suburb outside of Los Angeles called Thousand Oaks. Vivid childhood memories include long summer days winning championships for the Lakers on his driveway with neighborhood friends; parties with relatives seemingly every weekend; and despite his constant protestations, the 10:45 a.m. Sunday Mass at St. Julie’s with his parents, Patricio and Telly, and older siblings, Patrick and Tricia. After graduating from UC Berkeley, Mike began his career at PricewaterhouseCoopers with dreams of becoming successful in business, though God had other plans. It was here, living in San Francisco that he met the Jesuits, and in particular, Fr. Charlie Gagan, SJ, at St. Ignatius Parish. Here, the faint whisper of becoming a priest began. Though because the allure of worldly success was too seductive, Mike ignored it as best as he could—and did so for 10 years—until that whisper became a boisterous clamor. So, he quit his job, gave his dad his Porsche, packed his bags—and traveled the world. He wasn’t totally sure what he wanted to do. However, when he returned, Mike knew he wanted to meet God everywhere, so he entered the Jesuit novitiate. As a Jesuit, Mike has met God in many ways. As a novice, he met God in the silence of the 30-day retreat and in the stories of the imprisoned adolescents at Sylmar. As a philosopher at Saint Louis University, he met God in the works of St. Augustine and in the shared meals at Bridges of Hope homeless shelter. At Bellarmine College Preparatory in San Jose, California, Mike met God in the faces of the students he taught. And as a theologian in Madrid, he met God as an immigrant in a far-off land speaking a foreign language. After ordination, Mike hopes to continue to meet God in the people that he serves. His first assignment will be as associate pastor at Blessed Sacrament Church in Hollywood, California.