Welcome Fr. Michael

My dear friends in Christ,

To begin with, I express my deep gratitude to God and to Bishop Zarama for giving me this opportunity to serve you in what is truly a homecoming for me. Also, to Msgr. Doug for his warm welcome and generous help in the transition. St. Michael was my first parish, where I was brought into the Church under Msgr. John Wall, and it is a great joy to return now as pastor. A few words of introduction as we begin to get to know each other. I was born in Stanford, CA but my family moved to Cary when I was five, and I grew up in the area. I have one older brother who is married with three wonderful children and lives now, along with my parents, near Boston, MA. My family is not Catholic, and, in my early years, we were not religious at all. Over time we became more so, and I was eventually baptized in the Church of the Nazarene. After growing disaffected with faith of any kind, I had a profound conversion while travelling through Europe and was received into full communion with the Catholic Church at the Easter Vigil in 2003. Thanks be to God, my mother has also since become Catholic, and my brother is now a Christian of deep and vibrant faith.

Following my conversion, I enrolled at NC State and graduated with a B.S. in Economics in 2006. While there, I became involved with Catholic Campus Ministry where my vocation to the priesthood was nourished and confirmed. That led me to pursue priesthood in the Diocese of Raleigh and I was sent for formation at St. Charles Borromeo Seminary in Philadelphia. In seminary, I developed a love for philosophy and theology, along with sacred music and liturgy, first singing in and then directing one of the seminary choirs.

Upon ordination to the priesthood in 2014, I served as parochial vicar at St. Mark’s in Wilmington. In 2017, I was named administrator and then pastor of St. Charles Borromeo Catholic Church in Ahoskie, St. Anne’s Mission in Scotland Neck, and Holy Trinity Catholic Church in Williamston, all in the northeastern part of the state. Along with my parish roles, I currently serve as an instructor in the formation program for the Permanent Diaconate, and as a member of the Diocesan Finance Council, Diocesan Priest Council, and the College of Consultors. In my free time, I love listening to music, good books, cooking and visiting with friends, getting outside, and travelling, especially internationally, both to new places and back to beloved favorites.

It is my great joy and privilege now to come to serve you as your next pastor. I look forward to getting to know you in the months and years ahead. Please be assured of my daily prayers for all of you and I ask yours for me as well. Under the protection of St. Michael the Archangel, and through the intercession of our Blessed Mother, may we, as a parish and as members of Christ’s body, may grow in love of God and of one another.

In Christ,

Fr. Burbeck