Befriending a Priest


#1

Hello,

I haven’t posted for a long time, but wish to receive advice on a situation in which I am unsure how to proceed.

I am very good friends with a religious (Dominican) priest, and we are going to travel to one of the other priories in a few weeks to visit one of his spiritual brothers. I have only met the brother once, two years ago, during which he asked me to him visit again (I live a hundred miles from where he was based, and he has since been moved to the other religious house), so I never did arrange to meet him, until now.

As a result, I feel quite guilty at not having befriended him sooner, and am therefore going to suggest a phone/letter correspondence with him (he’s quite elderly and doesn’t use a computer). The problem I’m facing though is that he may have forgotten me, as his health has somewhat deteriorated recently, so I was wondering how I could suggest a correspondence/friendship with him, bearing in mind the circumstances.

Knowing that he is quite lonely and solitary, I am keen to do this, and am therefore asking advice on how to befriend him in the ways I suggest above.

Thanks in advance,
Altargirl


#2

Well, if you know that he doesn’t use a computer, than an old-fashioned letter is what you need! :thumbsup:

I would go this route and would encourage you to reach out to him. Has he forgotten you? Maybe. But at the risk of sounding cliche, it is the thought that counts in the end, right? :slight_smile:

And listen, whenever you reach out to someone, there’s always risk. Risk they may not like it, risk they may not respond, or respond in a manner you didn’t expect.


#3

If he doesn’t remember you, you are in the same position you are today. However, you letter may brighten an old man’s day.

If he does remember you, your letter will probably brighten his day. You may develop a nice friendship.

Don’t overthink it. Reaching out may be the type of ministry needed for a person who has devoted his life to helping others.


#4

Altargirl, your message is very sweet. It is hard to befriend priests. It seems too many are afraid of it, because of the… celibacy/prudence thing. At least, in my experience in trying to have friendships with them.

I think… more priests should be told they are loved. They serve so much, so that kindness and appreciation I think, is beautiful. A lot of priests are lonely. They have their brothers in the priesthood, and an innocent friendship with a female, like Francis and Clare (along those lines, with respect to the vocation) is quite sweet.

Keep up this friendship, I say. Send packages, cards. Hopefully he’ll appreciate it, rather than reject it.

With prayer
GW


#5

Thanks very much to both of you for your advice.

With help from my other friend in the Religious Order, I found his phone number and contacted him, during which he remembered me instantly and jokingly scolded me for not approaching him earlier. I’ve now arranged to see him again next week, by when he ‘will not allow me to leave until I’ve given him my contact details’!

Thank the Lord for the revival of such a wonderful friendship.

God Bless,
Altargirl


#6

That is awesome, Altergirl. God Bless you for brightening the world of a man who devoted his life to brightening other people’s world. :):thumbsup::slight_smile:


#7

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