Attachement to a Priest

Good morning all,
I was welcomed into the Church at the Easter Vigil. I love being Catholic, I loved RCIA, I love it all! We have two Priests at my Parish and I love them both dearly. I have become attached, a lot, to both of them as they were both very involved in RCIA.
One of the Priests, the one that did my first confession and was there for a lot of other “firsts”, ( the other Priest was also with me for a lot of firsts) announced he is leaving our Parish as an Associate Pastor and he is getting his own Parish.I am very excited for him but I feel heartbroken too. I don’t want him to leave, I feel like I am losing my best friend. He has been there when no one else was and he knows more about me than anybody else in this world. I feel highly attached to him.
When starting RCIA I was an EVIL person and I have made such a turnaround and he was a big part of my change by his guidance and knowledge. And I know the Church is about God and all that are Holy that surround him and so this changes nothing on that aspect, doesn’t break my faith or anything like that. I don’t want you to think I tie my faith around him only. I just will miss him, simple as that. I don’t know if this is normal or what to do to help me cope. Please help, tell me I am not crazy!

It happens and I think they’re told to expect it. They help us in so many ways, this is why we are to pray so much for them and their sanctity. I had a similar experience, but I was 16 with Baptist parents.

I find your experience similar to building an attachment to the dr who delivers one’s baby. Some women can’t stop thinking about the OB who delivered their child, and for this reason I encourage the husbands to be with the wives during delivery.

I know of one priest who was reassigned to a parish after 10 or so years, and he felt lost at the new parish. Those of us from his old parish tried to make it a point to go visit him so the sting wouldn’t be quite so bad. He eventually made friends, but they have to go through adjustment just like anyone else.

Ask Mary, Queen of the Clergy, to take this matter to her Son, the Divine High Priest. Thank Him for this priest, then commend him to God and let go.


Thank you, it is so hard.
I know I have the faith and strength with me but he has just been my crutch of someone to to go to. I totally understand the doctor analogy. Some people who help us will always have a special place in our heart.

It’s that time of year again. :o Priests are getting shuffled around to new assignments.

As long as you don’t – as you said – tie your faith around one priest, I don’t think you are wrong for feeling that sense of loss. We do get attached to people, especially people who have played important parts in our lives.

I think it’s natural to feel that way. You just want to make sure you deal with it constructively. Don’t let it shake your faith. Don’t let it make you bitter towards the bishop who is moving him somewhere else. Accept it and keep growing in your faith. I’m sure that’s what the priest would want you to do.

I am so happy the other Priest will be staying, at least for a little while longer. I am learning to get rid of the bitterness and see there is a master plan that I am not always aware of. I will miss him, but it won’t shake my faith, I’m home and I am not straying!

When our Associate pastor was reassigned last year, he called me to let me know. We had worked together on a few things and he wanted to let me know before they announced it at Mass.

I told him that I was terribly sad for myself and our parish. But was extremely happy for him and his new parish. I just tried to think of the people at his new parish that needed someone just like him.

Now a days it is easy to stay in touch. What with facebook, email and cell phones, it isn’t like just a few years ago, when your only contact would have been letters and long distance.

Oh, and we survived. We got a brand new, just ordained priest as our Associate Pastor. And you know what? We love him too. He is very different from the previous one, but has brought many gifts to our parish.

I understand your pain. Our priest has been with this parish for less than a year and is being transferred. Since my wife and I also came into the Church at Easter Vigil, we are sensing a bit of the loss as he has been fantastic. I know we will move on but, it is still bad.

One thing we are doing is having our marriage blessed at a Saturday night Mass and then taking him out to dinner. Kind of our way to show our appreciation!

We all miss the people who meant a lot to us during our lives. Be assured that there will be new priests who will have many gifts to share with their parishes. Meanwhile, others will be benefiting from the good things this priest shared with you.

God’s blessings to you!

That’s good to hear. :slight_smile:

Placement of priests is tricky business and there is no way we can see all sides. The bishop and his collaborators are looking at all the priests and all the parishes in the diocese. Older priests are retiring and newer priests are getting ordained – but often not at replacement rate. There are lots of variables.

I’ve learned to see the wisdom in moving priests around. As someone I knew used to quip: “If you are a good priest, everyone should get to enjoy you. If you are a bad priest, no one should have to endure you forever. And if you move all the priests, no one has to tell you which one you are.” :stuck_out_tongue:

It is hard, though. Change often is. But it is also an opportunity for growth.

Changes in parish assignments are common. But it varies form Dioceases to Dioceases. I think four years is about the average. And its a good thing in a way because it keeps the priests from becoming too attached to a particular parish and it keeps the parishioners from becoming too attached to a particular priest. And remember, some of the parishoners may be glad for a change. Our own parish is going to get a new pastor soon, but we were all expecting it would happen. Linus2nd

Thank you all, quite frankly, I felt silly…when he announced he was leaving, tears poured down my eyes. You are so right, the next Parish will be very blessed to have him and I look forward to meeting the Priest that takes his place. Luckily, the main Priest will be staying so it won’t be a complete change at once. Change is hard but there is a reason, I keep telling myself that.:slight_smile:

It is never easy to say goodbye to friends but especially those that have been an important part of special changes in our lives. Hopefully you will be able to attend Mass sometimes at his new parish and it won’t have to be a forever goodbye. It is so nice to know that you will still have time to spend with the other priest, most of our parishes have only one priest here. And, welcome to our faith:thumbsup:

I know how you feel. We recently found out that our priest was being moved and I had the same response. But then I considered…in just a few short years he walked with my family through some MAJOR life events. Births, deaths, baptisms, reconciliations, First Communions, anointings, and in the midst of performing his duties as a priest, we have had the privilege of getting to know a truly wonderful man of God. And while there is that selfish part of me that doesn’t want to let go, I know that his next parish will be just as blessed as we have been. I feel kind of bad for whoever comes next. It won’t be an easy adjustment. :frowning:

Last year the priest who was instrumental in my returning to the Faith was re-assigned. I was heart-broken (still am), but he was going to be pastor of the parish he grew up in, so I was happy for him. The new pastor is fine, but I don’t feel any attachment to him, or the other two priests here. Don’t get me wrong, they are fine men/priests. Two of them are now being re-assigned. I just try hard to remember that they are here to represent Christ, and it really is about the Faith, not who the priest is/isn’t.

I know exactly how you feel! Our associate pastor just left a few weeks ago and, though I’m not as connected to him as my pastor since he was only in our parish since October 2011, the announcement that he was leaving was very surprising and took me off guard. It’s very weird going back to one priest. Several friends of mine wondered who they’d go to for Confession even though our pastor is still there but they preferred the associate because he was a little easier (I prefer my pastor since he is no-nonsense).

It’s going to be VERY hard on me if our pastor is reassigned. I don’t know when that will be. It could be in 3 years since he’s been there almost 3 or longer. He’s done amazing stuff for our parish. My relationship with Jesus and the Church has strengthened through his work. :slight_smile:

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