Can this be it?


#1

Lk 23-27

The Conditions of Discipleship 23 Then he said to all, “If anyone wishes to come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily* and follow me. 24 For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it. 25 What profit is there for one to gain the whole world yet lose or forfeit himself? 26 Whoever is ashamed of me and of my words, the Son of Man will be ashamed of when he comes in his glory and in the glory of the Father and of the holy angels. 27 Truly I say to you, there are some standing here who will not taste death until they see the kingdom of God.”

I have some barriers to becoming a Priest. They are huge barriers. Sometimes, now more than ever, these barriers are so huge that it appears outwardly that I do no longer want to be a Priest. Ever since reading the Bible after my RCIA, I've been nearly totally sure, rationally, that the above passage is key to understanding my purpose. As far as faith is concerned, all other knowledge and passages are important only insofar as they elucidate discipleship. My life seems to take me farther and farther away from religious or possible ordained life....it's always "the wrong place at the wrong time," and "if I'd have only known this 10 years ago," and phrases like that, which give a glimpse of terrible confusion and just plain bad luck. The minute I get what I really thought I needed to advance myself, this same 'get' becomes a headache of unimaginable proportions. I feel, when thinking about a desire for priesthood, like those guests who showed up for the wedding feast without proper garments. No, not even without proper garments, but garments that are offensive under even everyday circumstances. Torn jeans, smelly socks, dirty sneakers, smudged shirts. Like the church has simply neglected me and my appeal for help (in fact, it hasn't). Yet I have been old enough to help myself also for some time and outwardly I'm not really that offensive.
I don't know what to think. The desire to be a priest comes up again and again and again.


#2

What I found in my discernment process is that the path I though I was following and the path God would have me on often weren't the same! There were many false / almost starts when the time seemed right and then something unexpected rose up in the way. Eventually however, things finally came together (it took quite a while - trust me) - other avenues / opportunities I had considered closed down and the time just felt right and, more importantly, I felt ready.

It's difficult to know when the right time is but what can help is paying attention to the "signs" (things happening / not happening), how you yourself feel about the idea and what you feel God is saying to you in your heart (which obviously requires a bit of listening as part of prayer). Granted, how easily an obstacle can be surmounted (and whether it is actually an obstacle) depends on the details but trust in God (never easy, I know) and try to just let Him lead you on the path that right for you.


#3

Judging from what you wrote, I would say that you are called to be a priest, but that there will quite potentially be great suffering for you. There will be suffering of many kinds, whatever road we choose.


#4

My question is: what do you think the passage means? Do you think it only applies to priests? Do you think, if God wants you to be a priest, anything could stand in your way? Is it possible, you actually think you will make the way open for yourself? Or that you know best what vocation suits God’s purpose for you?

Every day you are called to show forth the face of God. To everyone. To neighbors and family, to bus drivers and people in lines you wait in. You are called to charity and kindness and self-sacrifice. * Every day.* You are not called to try and be a priest every day.

We are a royal priesthood. Are you faithful in small things so that God will trust you with larger things? Are you feeding the hungry and clothing the naked?

I don’t want you to answer this post, except to yourself.

Go serve God every day. If He decides you will be a priest, you will. I promise you, He can handle any problems that may present themselves. And if He does not, all the intention in the world will not get you there. Let go. Let God.


#5

Are you in contact with a priest, a vocation director, or a spiritual director to help you sort all this out, or are you attempting to do this on your own? I'm not trying to be snide or snarky here. Finding one or two quotes from scripture that seem to underline one's position is really setting oneself up to be prone to error.

Even if you enter a seminary, remember that that period of time, in addition to being a period of formation is also a period of discernment. It is of great help to have experienced people to help you determine whether you really have a vocation, and it is no shame to leave the seminary if it turns out that you don't have a vocation.

Most of us here would have no idea whether or not you have a vocation to the priesthood or consecrated religious life (or both.)


#6

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