Fr. Michael was born the third of seven children of Frank and Teresa Suhy on January 21, 1974 in Detroit. Michael had the great joy of being raised in a Catholic home by loving and affirming parents.
In the third grade, as he would lay in bed at night, God our Father chose to reveal His Son to Michael. Michael would see Jesus hanging on the Cross and he would weep tears of joy and gratitude as he would say: Thank you! Thank you! This experience is foundational to understanding Michael’s life. It was an overwhelming confirmation of how Good our God is and how deeply He loves us, manifested in the gift of the Savior. Michael knew he wanted to live His life for our Father, but didn’t quite yet know what that meant.
In the ninth grade, during his freshman year at Catholic Central in Redford, Michigan, Michael encountered Fr. Ned Donoher, a Basilian priest and teacher at Catholic Central. Michael was struck by how passionately Fr. Ned loved Jesus and loved Jesus’ people. The holiness of Fr. Ned was the vehicle through which Michael heard the calling to the priesthood. He now understood how the Father was calling him to live his life for Him. He heard in his heart a desire to love Jesus and to love Jesus’ people just like Fr. Ned. When he told his parents his desire to pursue the priesthood, he received an abundance of love and affirmation.
During his senior year at Catholic Central High School, Michael began to doubt how the Lord could be calling him to the priesthood. He made the decision to run from his vocation and pursue a degree in International Business. His love for languages and people made it seem to be an ideal choice.
During his freshman year at U of M, Ann Arbor, Michael experienced the power and mercy of Jesus Christ in an amazing way. At a pro-life rally on campus, he heard a young college student boldly and convincingly proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ. Michael was so moved, he returned to his dorm room at West Quad, fell to his knees, and welcomed Jesus into his heart. When Michael got up from his knees, he was a new man! Jesus had broken the chains of sin that bound him. Jesus placed an insatiable hunger for His Word in his heart. This is another foundational experience in Michael’s life. His conviction that Jesus is alive; that Jesus is Lord; that Jesus came not to judge or to condemn but to save is rooted in how Jesus changed his life forever.
At the end of his freshman year, with his mom and dad’s blessing, he took a year off from college to be a pro-life missionary. Michael was blessed to live in a Christian community of fellow college age students as they spent a year standing up for the Gospel of Life. As a member of Collegians Activated to Liberate Life, Michael spent his time traveling ten mid-western States helping to start, build up, and support pro-life groups on college campuses. During this year, Michael experienced God’s grace moving mountains: praying outside of abortion clinics, offering love and support to moms in crisis pregnancies, experiencing hearts be touched and lives of unborn children being saved. During his time as a pro-life missionary, Michael participated in six rescues at abortion clinics. Together with fellow Christians, they would lay down their lives in front of the doors of abortion clinics in order to buy time for the moms to say yes to life. At every rescue, there was always one confirmed save: a mom who made the choice to let her child see the light. He was arrested six times, and served 20 plus days in county jails and three months in federal prison.
BACK TO COLLEGE
At the end of his year as a missionary, the Lord opened the door for Michael to pursue his vocation to the priesthood. He was directed by his spiritual father, Fr. Alfred Kunz, to attend Magdalen College as preparation for his entry into seminary or religious life. His four years at Magdalen college exposed him to the Great Books and to the stunning beauty of our Catholic Faith and its Traditions.
While at Magdalen College, Michael was introduced to the beauty and glory of the monastic life through the holiness of Fr. Cassian Folsom, osb, a monk of St. Meinrad Archabbey. As Michael finished his studies, he became aware of Fr. Cassian’s founding of a new Benedictine Monastery in Rome, Italy. Michael was drawn to the total consecration of one’s life to the Lord through the monastic life. In September of 1998, he petitioned and was accepted as a postulant for Fr. Cassian’s monastery.
BENEDICTINE MONASTIC LIFE
Michael entered the novitiate on July 16, 1999 and made his simple vows on July 16, 2000, receiving the religious name Brother Clement. His formation in the monastery grounded him in the beauty of prayer, of Lectio Divina with God’s Word, and of the glories of worshiping the Lord.
He was ordained a priest on the feast of St. Scholastica, on February 10, 2005.
In 2007, he was made the pastor of St. Eutizio, in Preci, Italy. During his three years as pastor, Fr. Clement experienced a tremendous amount of growth. He absolutely loved serving the Lord and His people as a parish priest. Being the father of a parish family filled Fr. Clement’s heart with great joy.
IMMACULATE CONCEPTION, LAPEER, MI
In the fall of 2010, he was called back to his monastery, and in 2011, the Lord opened the door for him to return to the United States. He served from April 2011 to June 2013 at Immaculate Conception in Lapeer, MI. His assignment at Immaculate Conception involved hospital, prison, and young adult ministry. Immaculate Conception is a vibrant Catholic Parish with a Catholic School. Every day Fr. Clement spent in the life of a parish, the Lord was confirming his vocation to the Diocesan Priesthood.
In 2012, Fr. Clement began the three-year process to be incardinated into his home Archdiocese, the Archdiocese of Detroit.
OUR LADY OF GOOD COUNSEL, PLYMOUTH, MI
He served from July 1 of 2013 to November of 2014 at Our Lady of Good Counsel, in Plymouth, MI as an Associate Pastor. While at Our Lady of Good Counsel as an Associate, Fr. Clement experienced a transformation in his priesthood. He became aware that as a priest, he’s not just responsible for the salvation of the souls of those who enter the Church doors, but of everyone that lives within the parish boundaries. Fr. Clement experienced an ever-increasing zeal to make Jesus known and loved by all.
ST. LOUISE DE MARILLAC, WARREN, MI
In November of 2014, he was made pastor of St. Louise, Warren, MI. As pastor of St. Louise, Fr. Clement spearheaded the renewal of a Catholic Parish that found its strength in worshiping the Lord and sharing its faith with others.
On September 29, 2015, the Feast of St. Michael the Archangel, Fr. Clement was officially incarnated into the Archdiocese of Detroit and thereby returned to his baptismal name of Michael.
OUR LADY OF GOOD COUNSEL, PLYMOUTH, MI
He was made pastor of Our Lady of Good Counsel on July 1, 2019. The assignment as pastor of our Lady of Good Counsel allowed Fr. Michael to use all of his gifts and life experiences to serve one of the largest and most vibrant parish families in the Archdiocese.