Each person is called to love and serve God, each in his or her own unique way. Some are called to be priests who “serve in the name and in the person of Christ the Head in the midst of the community…they serve the People of God by teaching, divine worship, and pastoral governance” (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1591-1592). Others consecrate themselves to God in religious life, professing the vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience in order to serve God and the Church (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 944-945). The people below are responding to God’s call by preparing to enter into the vocation of priesthood. Please pray for them as they continue on their journeys.
Seminarians Preparing for Priesthood
Seminarian @ Mt. St. Mary’s of the West (Cincinnati, OH), Studying for the Archdiocese of Louisville, KY
Interests: Languages, geography
Brief description of your discernment journey: I felt interested in the priesthood since early in high school, but by junior year, I had put off considering it and focused instead on college and career. By late college, I still felt a desire to go to seminary but didn’t feel ready to pursue the vocation, so I graduated and started a job. Six months later I went on a discernment retreat, and felt joy and excitement. Six months after that I quit my job and moved back to my home diocese to more actively discern. I realized that the only thing holding me back was my fears, and since God does not speak through fear, I concluded that the fears were not of Him.
Advice for those discerning their vocation: Don’t let your fears govern your decisions; instead, entrust them to Jesus and Mary. Try making a pros-cons list, in order to help you make a rational judgment. Trust that God can do what is impossible for you, even clear from your path insurmountable obstacles. Eventually, stop waiting and move forward in some direction, and let God use that momentum to lead you on the path He has prepared for you. He will not forsake you!
Studying for Congregation of Holy Cross, Postulancy, Moresu Seminary, Notre Dame, IN
Interests: Hiking, Running, Camping, Reading, Cooking
Favorite Scripture verse: John 10:27-28 “My sheep hear my voice. I know them and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish. No one can take them out of my hand.”
Brief description of your discernment journey: I began to think about the priesthood when I was in high school. In college I was fortunate to witness the holy lives of the men of the Congregation of Holy Cross. Their spirituality and charism influenced me greatly. From there I came to Indianapolis and was lucky enough to work with Fr. Rick Nagel for two years. He showed me what a happy, healthy, and holy priesthood can look like. After two years of being closer to my family, I have decided to explore my vocation more deeply by entering the seminary for the priests of the Congregation of Holy Cross.
Advice for those who are discerning their vocation: God wants us to be happy. Doing God’s will gets us there.
Prayer requests: Please pray for my discernment, my family, and the men of the Congregation of Holy Cross. Thank you!
Seminarian @ St. Gregory the Great Seminary (Seward, NE), Studying for the Catholic Diocese of Lincoln, NE
Interests: Outdoors, basketball, Husker football, trivia
Favorite Saint: St. John the Evangelist
Brief description of your discernment journey: I never seriously considered the priesthood as a vocation because I was so sure that I was going to be married. In college, I remember being told on numerous occasions that I should consider priesthood. Since I was always dating at the time, I took it that they were giving me a hard time. It wasn’t until Fall 2012 when I heard a gospel passage during the 7pm Young Adult Mass at St. John the Evangelist that I began to consider priesthood. That night I actually began to see myself as a priest. I also began to see how my skill-set might be well suited for the priesthood.
Advice for those discerning their vocation: I would go on dates. I would get a spiritual director. Most importantly, I would set aside a half hour each day in silence with Jesus (in a Catholic Church if possible.)
Seminarian @ Mundelein Seminary, Studying for the Diocese of Gary, IN
Interests/Hobbies: Video games, fishing, board games
Favorite Saint: St. Thomas Aquinas or St. John Paul II
Favorite Scripture verse: Romans 10: 14-15
Brief description of your discernment journey to where you are today: While I first felt a tug on my heart to the priesthood when I was in 8th grade, I started to seriously discern a vocation to the priesthood in college at IUPUI. It was the St. John’s community and campus ministry at IUPUI that taught me how live as a faithful disciple of Jesus Christ and gave me the tools to seriously discern a vocation. After discerning with a religious order after graduation, I felt God calling me to the diocesan life. I was accepted as a seminarian for the diocese of Gary, IN, and have been a seminarian ever since.
Advice for those who are discerning their vocation: Listen to the voice of the Holy Spirit, let God lead you to a good faith community, and have patience.
Prayer requests: For an increase in the culture of vocations in the United States, especially for the Diocese of Gary. For receptiveness to the Holy Spirit in continuing to discern a vocation to the priesthood.