Sorry if the below is disjointed. it’s very much “Train of thought”, and unedited. but maybe some of you can offer constructive comments.
I’m a Married Man, I have 2 young children. I hope and pray that the Lord will send us more in the future.
I have a good, secure, well paying Job, for which I spent 5 years training at university. I have 10 years experience in the job.
Our Lord taught us in his silent years about the dignity of simple ordinary work. Many of our Saints have taught us again about the importance of this. I’ve tried, but I can’t find satisfaction here! Ever since I was a teenager I have felt called to something else. I have wanted to work full time doing the Lords Work. I want to be a full time evangelist. I have always wanted this.
I now have an opportunity that in around 2-3 years I can be debt free. I just need to stay the course and keep disciplined.That gives me a window of opportunity. Since the day I started University I have been in debt. I have not had the option to leave everything and do voluntary work or in other ways devote myself to evangelisation or charitable work as I have seen others do.
On one level I feel very strongly called. I am exploring the possibility of a call to the Diaconate. That needs to wait for several things:
- Our Last bishop in this diocese did not ordain men with dependant children (exceptions were made for men who’s youngest were in High School when they started training). We now don’t have a bishop who can change that rule and need to wait for a replacement
- The most typical rule in England is that a man’s youngest children should have started school before the application and formal discernment process starts.This makes sense
- being debt free in 3 years corresponds to the time when my current youngest child will start school
A Deacon is a man who brings the Good News to the Poor. He is a preacher of the Gospel. a servant to the Church, a servant to those in need. I have no doubt that whether as an ordained minister, or as a Lay-Man that this is my calling… but I don’t know how to express it right now.
So: I can wait. I can bide my time. I am involved in Parish Life. I am involved in a community called Couples for Christ. I am working on my spiritual formation. I am seeking the Lord.
But I feel so strongly that my current job is not the Lord’s plan for me. I feel so strongly that I should be doing something very different. I want to be working with people; telling more people about the Gospel.
This feeling won’t go away.
as a teenager my Mum used to placate me and tell me I need to “Bloom where I’m planted”
The feeling faded in the years I wandered and shoved my faith to the back of my mind. but as I returned to The Lord, so did this desire. And it just keeps getting stronger.
I just don’t want my current job any more. I want to be doing something very different… but I have to pay my debts and support my family. I can’t just run off and join a missionary organisation. My first Vocation is to be a Husband and a Dad. To be the Best Husband and Dad I can be.
But I still cant put aside the feeling that this desk, this job is not my calling. There is something very different the Lord has for me: Now, or at least Soon.
I don’t know where to look for it.
This is the Catholic Church. our Lay missionaries, our lay ministers are not a well paid career option. I’m not good at doing Poverty, and dont know if I can impose that on my wife.
But this calling won’t go away. I’m looking for options. I’m looking, I’m praying. Where Lord? where do you want me to go. Lead me I will follow.
I want the time to Study your Word, and Your Will. I want the time and opportunities to tell others. to Teach others. To rebuild Your Church.
Can I leave this Job behind? Leave the long hours behind? Leave the cushy wages behind? Bring my family to live in poverty and simplicity? Find a job that serves others that spreads the Good News?
Where am I going… How can I find the right path?
This Job is one where I could realistically ask to work “Condensed Hours”. and do a 37.5 hour working week in 4 days, leaving one extra day to devote to other tasks… some ministry, or study or something else…
That could be permanent. It could be a transition.
Ireland developed Spirit Radio. The USA has the EWTN network. other Christian groups have radio stations in the uk.
Where is “Our Lady of Walsingham Radio”. A Catholic led radio station which draws inspiration from the EWTN talk radio, but also from the mass appeal of Spirit Radio: “Ireland’s Positive Sound”
A radio station which is Catholic Led, but lends air time to eccumenical understanding and offers a voice to the Orthodox church, the Anglican Church and to others. That focuses on Evangelisation, on apologetics and on true eccuminism. working together where we can and defending the Truth without compromise.
Could working with a team to set up such a project be a possible career path?
Catholic Answers have a number of professional apologists, these are vibrant speakers who travel the world and provide teaching ans speeches at various events. They get paid professional fees.
One of my mentors, Fr. Kelly, is a Catholic Priest who does something similar: albeit without the “professional fees”, giving retreats up and down the UK.
I have an opportunity to start this type of thing on a voluntary basis in the CFC. They need speakers, I am eloquent and can research the topics carefully. I have a Love for The Truth, and am seeking it more and more.
Could this be a model for part of a future ministry?
Bloom where I’m planted. Right now I am in a formation programme in the CFC. I have a lay ministry being developed there… but the desire is still there: More More theres something more. there’s something I’ve missed. there’s something bigger. This desk is not my calling.