National Author Rev. Michael J. Denk Joins Walsh University as Priest in Residence


School News

Walsh University is proud to welcome Rev. Michael J. Denk as the University’s new Priest in Residence for the 2018-19 academic year.  Fr. Michael will be assisting with Mass as well as teaching and leading new projects in the areas of video production and recording within Walsh’s Marlene and Joe Toot Global Learning Center.

"I am very grateful to be here at Walsh University.  I'm especially excited about working with the students in the Global Learning Center," said Fr. Denk.  "As I bring my ministry of The Prodigal Father here I am reminded of a quote from The Holy Father: 'It is not technology which determines whether or not communication is authentic, but rather the human heart and our capacity to use wisely the means at our disposal.'"  ~ Source: Message of His Holiness Pope Francis for the 50th World Communications Day.  

Fr. Michael was ordained into the priesthood for the Diocese of Cleveland on May 12, 2007. He received his Master of Divinity and Master of Arts from St. Mary Seminary in Wickliffe, Ohio, and a Bachelor’s Degree in Communications, with a specialization in video and audio production, from Cleveland State University in 2001.

Fr. Michael is dedicated to helping others encounter Christ through the celebration of the Eucharist, preaching, the Sacrament of Reconciliation, spiritual direction and prayer.  He is devoted to the poor, especially in Africa and El Salvador where he has led several mission trips. Through the Global Fellows program, he has visited Madagascar and Rwanda with Catholic Relief Services.

With a focus in communications, Fr. Michael incorporates new media into his ministries. He not only came up with the concept but was the chief architect in the development of a mobile application called The "EXAMEN" App, which assists people to connect with God throughout their day. Besides creating content produced and distributed through The Prodigal Father Productions, Fr. Michael has authored articles published in various Catholic magazines.  

Fr. Michael is the author of the book, app, and program: "Pray40Days: The Personal Relationship with God You’ve Always Wanted."  He created this as a way for people to experience meditation and contemplation. Pray40Days guides you through different types of meditative and contemplative prayer.  

The Prodigal Father is a non-profit Catholic ministry founded with a vision to shepherd the faithful into a deeper relationship with God the Father through prayer.

Fr. Michael has been given a leave of absence to follow his religious calling with the group Voluntas Dei Institute. The apostolic objective of the Voluntas Dei Institute is "to create peace and brotherhood in Jesus Christ." The institute’s workplace is the whole world: "Wherever Christ has His rights." A missionary spirit must animate members wherever they witness, whether home or abroad.

For more information on The Prodigal Father, visit