Hello Everyone. I know I have been posting a lot on here lately, but I have a question regarding my vocation. Before the though of religious life or the priesthood even came into my brain I sinned frequently, never prayed a lot, and I never really read the Bible. I guess I just am looking for assurance that my vocation is true. For those of you that know, I feel so called and I feel very positive and confident in my vocation. I am called to serve and lay down my life for the service of God and others as a priest or religious brother. I attended a Catholic school so God was always there, not just in such a pronounced way until I started to feel called. It’s almost as if I underwent a sort of conversion. I have always been Catholic. I have never shared this aspect of my calling with my spiritual director so this is a first for me. I am 99.9% positive that I am called to the religious life or priesthood, and am just wondering if it has ever been heard of, this type of conversion and calling that you wouldn’t expect? Thank You All! God Bless You All!


If you're looking for assurance, I'll start by saying that you won't get complete assurance until the day your Bishop lays his hands on your head and ordains you a priest. But in terms of just feeling confident, well, if the thought of priesthood/religious life makes you feel happy or interested, that's coming from somewhere. If you feel that discernment is helping you grow closer to God, that's coming from somewhere. I'd reckon that those things are positive signs that your heart is in the right place, and you're being moved by some prompting of God. I can't say that for sure, but it sounds like you're doing all the right things. People can feel the call at varying stages of their lives, and if God's grace is moving you to act, and it is inspiring you to break old habits and turn closer to Him, then that cannot be a bad thing. You sound like you're on the right track so far. As for asking a lot of questions, that's what the vocation forum is here for!


I have discerned since February. I know God is calling me to a better way of life and religious life or priesthood, not just a better life.


If you're wanting examples of conversion stories try St Augustine of Hippo - the original wild child turned bishop and Church Father; St Ignatius of Loyola - the solider turned Jesuit founder; or Thomas Merton - the playboy turned Cistercian monk and best-selling author

There's a classic saying which comes to mind: God doesn't the qualified, he's qualifies the chosen. Or, as a friend of mine once put it: God calls those who most need his help! Feelings of unworthiness were something which I struggled with for a while, early in my discernment - I knew people who I though would make far better priests than me and could even point them out to God if necessary. However, I realised that God didn't want those other people, he wanted me. I've also come to realise that my ordinariness - the fact that I'm not a super-devout, wonderful, righteous, holy, person - is something to be valued because it's what makes me able to relate to others and them to me. Just take it slowly - discernment is a marathon, not a sprint - and remember that everything happens in God's time not ours.


Wow, that was very inspiring. God Bless You!


[quote="brycehecht, post:3, topic:337510"]
I have discerned since February. I know God is calling me to a better way of life and religious life or priesthood, not just a better life.


I Wasn't trying to imply otherwise. I'm simply saying this as a point of information, but you may feel called, but you literally cannot be 100% sure until a Bishop has ordained you, or you're taking final vows with a religious order. Discernment is all about testing that call. February may seem like a long time to have been discerning, but in the long term, it isn't. I'm not saying you don't feel called, it very much sounds like God is at least inviting you to come and see. That being the case, keep up doing whatever you're doing and get in touch with a vocations director.


You’re welcome. Admittedly it took a while for me to come to that realisation. I just hope and pray that people see me for who I am, rather than treating me as someone I’m not. God bless you too. :slight_smile:


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