Address:106 Osage Avenue, Bismarck, ND
Pastor Selva Periannan
I am Selvaraj Periannan, an Indian, born the third and last boy to my peasant parents. I grew up in a village where there is no church even now! I went to church once in a blue moon or occasionally on Christmas and Easter. My faith grew up in the family through my wonderful and God fearing parents. Because, my parents didn’t go to school, we three boys were compelled to go to school. Going to school every day was like going to hell for me. Since I grew up in the farm, I liked to work with my father in the field. I didn’t do well in my school. It was a constant battle between intellectual and manual work.
After high school, I joined seminary at the age of 18 to become a priest in the Franciscan Congregation. After 12 years of formation and education, I became priest on November 22, 1988. Since then, I served as a Parish Priest in South India, Zimbabwe, Burkina Faso, France, and Canada and from 2006-2017 in the Diocese of Bismarck. Therefore, I was a priest for 29 years, until last April 28, 2017. On that day, God called me away from priesthood in the Roman Catholic Church. I believe God was calling me to serve the church in a different way. The next day, I met Bishop Mark Narum.
As I was struggling for freedom and happiness in ministry since 2014, miraculously and gracefully God led me to Pr. Dennis Ristvedt, Bishop Mark Narum, Deacon Beth Anderson and finally Pastor Craig Schweitzer. God’s ways are amazing and His calling is miraculous! When I was kicked out of the priesthood very abruptly, I became homeless and jobless. When I didn’t know where to go and what to do, God became my refuge, shelter and providence! God has blessed this humble servant in so many wonderful ways.