Could I possibly be accepted as a priest?


#1

I am 48 and have been Catholic for only four years. I strongly desire to be come a priest, so much so that I often stay up late praying about it. It is something in the pit of my heart that will not go away.

I have an autistic disorder called Asperger's Syndrome. I have been told that if you have any physical or mental defect, you cannot become a priest. In my mind, that would be the greatest disappointment ever.

Is there any chance at all that I could become a priest?


#2

[quote="Dovid, post:1, topic:250027"]
I am 48 and have been Catholic for only four years. I strongly desire to be come a priest, so much so that I often stay up late praying about it. It is something in the pit of my heart that will not go away.

I have an autistic disorder called Asperger's Syndrome. I have been told that if you have any physical or mental defect, you cannot become a priest. In my mind, that would be the greatest disappointment ever.

Is there any chance at all that I could become a priest?

[/quote]

Hi Dovid,

I am not Catholic but let me ask you this: do you believe that with God anything is possible?

I feel for you for your problem. I dont quite understand why you have to be perfectly mentally healthy to enter the priesthood, etc. BUT if God wants you to, it's possible, right?

Dont ever let a defect hold you back! Anything is possible if you believe.

And if you're not called, dont be disappointed. You have faith that God knows whats best for you, right?

Good luck!

Remember, believe that anything is possible :)


#3

Many people diagnosed with Asperger’s are “high functioning autistic” with high IQ’s and great learning ability, when they are in the right environment with the right teachers. Don’t let this hold you back from giving it your all- God bless you for your desire to serve!


#4

I am 35 years old have a seizure disorder since I was 18, which doesnt prevent me from leading a perfectly normal healthly and active life, since it is controlled by medication. I know exactly what you going through cause I have wanting to become a priest since early junior school, and have gotten the same response. However I havent given up on it.


#5

If you feel in your heart like I do that God is truly calling you to be a priest you must not give up on it nobody what people may say. To me it is what is inside the person that counts. If God is truly calling you to be a priest like you think he is, at some point he would open a door for, just like he would for if in fact he is calling me to be a priest.


#6

[quote="Dovid, post:1, topic:250027"]
I am 48 and have been Catholic for only four years. I strongly desire to be come a priest, so much so that I often stay up late praying about it. It is something in the pit of my heart that will not go away.

I have an autistic disorder called Asperger's Syndrome. I have been told that if you have any physical or mental defect, you cannot become a priest. In my mind, that would be the greatest disappointment ever.

Is there any chance at all that I could become a priest?

[/quote]


No, if you have some kind of sickness, your Diocese will not accept you. It t akes a lot of work and energy to be a priest, You can live just as well as a layman. Attend mass, go to confession,recite the Divine HOurs, and read Scripture. But don't let this be a disappointment. They require alot from you in the seminary and I honestly am convinced that you would not be accepted. You can lead a good religious life as a layman

JESUS I TRUST IN YOU


#7

i know someone answered this question but go talk to your vocation director he will know for sure if you will be accepted or not.


#8

[quote="catholictiger, post:7, topic:250027"]
i know someone answered this question but go talk to your vocation director he will know for sure if you will be accepted or not.

[/quote]

Indeed. You'll never know if you never try. Maybe you're accepted, who knows, only God. ;)


#9

It could be case by case, if your disorder doesn't really interfere with your everyday life you could have a good chance that you could become a priest. :)


#10

The Benedictines of Jesus Crusified are a women’s Order for the disabled. They have a men’s Order for disabled men; you might look into them.

I saw that young man on American Idol 2011 with Ausperger’s and I can see just how well people with that condition can function!


#11

vocationnetwork.org/articles/show/235


#12

I have Crohn's Disease. I was accepted by my Diocese and will be entering seminary in a few weeks. I know many priests with Crohn's. I do not know any priests with Asperger's but with God anything is possible. Pray and talk to your Director of Vocations. God bless


#13

don’t take my word for it but I think the way it works is they will not accept you if they believe that you will no be in good enough physical condition or psychological condition to perform the duties required to be a priest.


#14

[quote="Jim_Roberts, post:6, topic:250027"]


No, if you have some kind of sickness, your Diocese will not accept you. It t akes a lot of work and energy to be a priest, You can live just as well as a layman. Attend mass, go to confession,recite the Divine HOurs, and read Scripture. But don't let this be a disappointment. They require alot from you in the seminary and I honestly am convinced that you would not be accepted. You can lead a good religious life as a layman

JESUS I TRUST IN YOU

[/quote]

Go talk to a Vocations Director. Dont let comments like this keep you down.


#15

[quote="alpprou, post:5, topic:250027"]
If you feel in your heart like I do that God is truly calling you to be a priest you must not give up on it nobody what people may say. To me it is what is inside the person that counts. If God is truly calling you to be a priest like you think he is, at some point he would open a door for, just like he would for if in fact he is calling me to be a priest.

[/quote]

That's just it. Is your desire like a submarine it just keeps resurfacing no matter how hard you try?? or how much you trty to squelch it??? if that is the case there a call. Do you ask the Virgin Mother to ask Jesus to releive your heart from the call if it not your calling? an when you ask that and the next day something pops out of the blue regarding your desires of being a priest? That has happened to me and the fifth diocese accepted me and now I am a seminarian and will start in August. I have been through hell and back being rejected and being told i am not called. I was too old the education is to much,, this that and Heaven knows what else. But like a submarine the desire kept popping up. My advice is if you are 35 and older is to contact Sacred Heart School of Theology ask for the vice rector and he will talk to you, and ask questions after he is satisfied he will give you the best diocese near you. IN the mean time contact the diocese of Gary, Springfield Mass Grand Island Neb you may try Memphis Tenn. Salt Lake City is another good diocese in regards to age, Also Cheyenne Wyo is a great diocese and I loved out there. Windy but a really nice place. If any of those I mentioed are near you call them and tell them the truth. Be honest about small things even the tiniest details. If you ever had this tell them. As long as you are honest and forthcoming you should find a diocese that will work with you. If you ever read the Collar, it is about Sacred Heart School of Theology paints a negative picture of that seminary and I totaly dissagree but there was a man that was totally blind and was sponsored. There is always hope. I find hope and so can you. God Bless Scoob.


#16

Sir, I also have Asperger's Syndrome. If the Priesthood is your obsession than you are likely more fit for it than many others. The first thing you ought to do is look att your condition in the positive. Maybe you aren't great at math. Neither are most people I know. But if you're anything like me than your focus is on Religious Philosophy and spend your days thinking about the Mysteries of Christ and how to convey them. The Priesthood is for you if this is the case.

Your Asperger's doesn't cause you to thrash violently or to view others as subhuman, it doesn't cause you to break down into hysterics for no reason or lapse in judgement. It might make us a little weird at times, but how often do you think that Father Larry is accused of being a little 'weird?' God needs Priests, especially those who earnestly feel a call. When they say illness, I think they mean a debilitating blemish that prevents you from conveying the Faith in honesty and love. We aren't Dr. House autistics, so we aren't opposed to the Magisterium. If you have the calling and the courage to go forward, by all means, do it.

I myself have set my goals for the Diaconate. I wish to become a Professor of Theology or philosophy, history, blah-blah. But more than anything, I wish to spread the Faith, and I have to imagine entering the Presbyterate will be an excellent oppurtunity for you to Evangelise.

May God bless you in your endeavours,


#17

There has been at least one priest with schizophrenia! He had a ministry on Long Island in NY. I believe he was even a Jesuit, a very intellectually rigorous order. True, he was denied at first when during his formation he developed his condition. Remember, probably most of what is holding you back is your own reticence. Often times the priesthood qua aspiration is for the disabled a healthy fantasy of escape from the troubles of the world, a desire to repay for their cures and recovery, and a genuine desire to be as close to God as they can. Aspergers involves if I'm not mistaken a difficulty with relating to people; so you might be thinking that the priesthood will change all that and give you good solid Christian relationships with good solid leaders and others in your parish. I really don't know the particulars of your experience of your disorder, it was just a guess.

Above all, remember, if you are very serious, very serious:

Jn 14:12-14.

This is just advice to help you with your quagmire and with those who would discourage you. I am not really qualified to say your chances or not. If you knock, the door should really be opened.


#18

[quote="Jim_Roberts, post:6, topic:250027"]


No, if you have some kind of sickness, your Diocese will not accept you. It t akes a lot of work and energy to be a priest, You can live just as well as a layman. Attend mass, go to confession,recite the Divine HOurs, and read Scripture. But don't let this be a disappointment. They require alot from you in the seminary and I honestly am convinced that you would not be accepted. You can lead a good religious life as a layman

JESUS I TRUST IN YOU

[/quote]

Not true. I know a seminarian that is diabetic and I have heard of some that have cancer. There was a story of a guy that was called to priesthood, he was ordained at 32 years old and 6 months later he died of luekemia (sp?) You can have a 26 year old ordained and get hit by a bus in NYC. It is not up to us who is called or who is not called it is up to the one that makes the call and that is God. Too many people start to play God in this world and how many men have been turned away that would have been wonderful priests and or religious. I have often heard that it is not a right to be a priest that is very very true, however when God invites you and calls you and you accept Then it is God's right to have you fullfill your call vocation and his desire for you. To save a thousand souls!! how true each priest will help thousands of souls. How many are lost by each man not given the right to answer his call to priesthood or religious. I was told by a bishop to join the Knights of Columbus or serve as a Eucahristic minister or some lay postition. But I was not attracted to that life. I am attracted to diocesan priesthood and that is that. I never gave up or listened to negativity. I knew God was calling me and I did my part and God did his.. If you feel called and laity doesn't excite you then you are most likely called to priesthood. Go for it do it and you will find a diocese that will accept you if you pray about it and if it is God's will. If it isn't ask the Blessed Mother Mary our spiritual Mother who loves us to intently to ask her Son Jesus Christ to releive you of the burning desire. If it passes then look at another vocation, If it keeps coming up at Mass or you can't stop thinking about it or out of the blue you hear from someone that is part of the process then you have your answer. Yes seminary will be long hard and taxing. But so are many other things are. A job is hard taxing and difficult. Life is hard having kids is hard having a family is very hard being a housewife is extremely hard work. Nothing is easy that is worth while nothing. Look at seminary as a two fold thing one a way to form you into a priest and that is the main way of looking at it. Look at it as a job inasmuch as do your daily studies your daily formation and like a job you strive to do good you never lose your job ,as long you do what you are told listen to advice and constructive criticism and work on what they tell you as would in any job you will make it. Keep trying don't give up hope and listen to God above all. Scoob.


#19

That my friend was a NICE answer and a great reply. I will pray for you that you will become a Deacon. Scoob


#20

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