Deacon Raney Johnson

Hello, my name is Deacon Raney Johnson. I am a seminarian for the diocese of Shreveport. My hometown is Shreveport, and I spent most of my life in Shreveport before entering seminary. My home parish is Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament, and I also attended the parochial school there from pre-K until the 7th grade. I was also a parishioner of St. Mary of the Pines and St. Thomas Aquinas in Ruston. After high school, I attended and graduated from Louisiana Tech University with a Bachelor’s degree in Journalism. It was during this time that I decided to apply to seminary for the diocese of Shreveport. Currently I study at Notre Dame Seminary in New Orleans, and I am in my last year of seminary at Notre Dame. After six years in seminary, I look forward to returning to the diocese and serving the people of the diocese of Shreveport.

My discernment of the priesthood started while I was in the 7th grade at Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament Academy. After Hurricane Katrina, some of the Sisters of the Holy Family from New Orleans moved to Shreveport and started teaching at OLBSA. One of those religious sisters of the Holy Family asked me in line one day if I had ever thought about being a priest. I never really stopped thinking about the priesthood after that day. Throughout high school, I discerned the priesthood primarily by staying in contact with a religious order called the Salesians. Their founder was St. John Bosco, and after learning about the Salesians, I developed a strong devotion to St. John Bosco.

At the end of high school, I decided to go to college at Louisiana Tech instead of joining the Salesians. However, I continued to think about becoming a priest. Coincidentally, I started working at a Catholic camp in college and discovered that their patron was St. John Bosco. Through this Catholic camp, my discernment of the priesthood was reawakened, but this time I felt God was calling me to be a priest for the diocese of Shreveport. After my sophomore year of college, I contacted Father Matthew Long, who was the vocation director at that time, and from that moment on, I knew that God was calling me to serve as a diocesan priest in the diocese of Shreveport.