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Karl Hartman

Where are you from?

I was born July 29, 1995 in St Marys, Ontario, Canada, and raised on 50 acres of farm land that my dad operated his carpentry business from. I am the second youngest of my 5 brothers. My parents Paul and Jane Hartman attended mass weekly with my family at Holy Name of Mary Parish in St Marys.

When you were a child, what did you dream of becoming when you grew up?

Every year I would write in a book that I kept all my special things in for each grade that I would either be a farmer or follow my dad into carpentry.

What was your background before you joined the Companions of the Cross?

After graduating High School, I served the 2013-14 year with NET Ministries of Canada. After, I returned home and worked full time with my family doing general carpentry and volunteered with various apostolic ministries.

What are your special interests?

I enjoy fixing or working with just about anything, in particular wood and metal. I enjoy the outdoors and photography. Sports I am interested include mountain biking, cross-country skiing, soccer, and hockey.

Who, or what, inspires you?

I am continually inspired by many people and their witness in my life and others. Those that have had the greatest impact in my life are my immediate family, godparents, friends, and St. Andre Bessette.

What led you to join the Companions of the Cross? Could you briefly explain your vocations story?

I was an altar server and attended school from kindergarten through grade 8 at the neighboring Holy Name of Mary Roman Catholic Elementary School. When I was choosing courses for high school I distinctly remember my parents asking me for the first time if I had ever considered becoming a priest, which I never had because I had plans of working in construction or farming.

In high school, as I got more involved with my Catholic faith, I had a personal encounter with Christ which brought me to a deeper trust of God. This trust in God also allowed me to see that He has a plan for my life and I should consider the priesthood as an option. I attended a couple ‘Come and See Weekends’ at St. Peter’s Seminary but decided to serve with NET Ministries of Canada for a year. During this year I became familiar with the Companions of the Cross. I expressed my sense of a call to the priesthood and was given an open invite to visit from Fr. Allan. 

However, I returned home and worked in the family business doing carpentry. I entered into a relationship and was involved with various apostolic ministries. I really enjoyed what I was doing; but, I could sense I was called to something different. Several months after the relationship ended I, again, was invited by Fr. Allan to visit. At first, I passed it off, but only a few days later I received a confirmation, when visiting with a cousin, that I should at least visit. From that first visit onward the Lord has continued to fill me and confirm where He has called me.

Karl Hartman Portrait