Discouraging Priesthood?

I recently discovered a good friend of mine has decided to take the path of becoming a priest. Is it wrong of me to come to the conclusion that he should not go forward with a decision i find to be a potential mistake?:confused:

Should come forward and express my opinion to him?

Why would you discourage him and why would you consider it to be a mistake?

Why would you do this? Itis his life and his decision. Not yours. Leave him be, please .

It is self seeking motive you have, and not respecting of him. Controlling motive. It will also serve to polarise him more.

This is a long process and if it is a mistake, he will learn that for himself .

A true friend will always support; and has he asked for your opinion to help him choose? I think not so please leave him be.

It is between him and God… as you say over there, butt out!

Your role as a friend is to support him not to discourage him. Leave him be.

I could think of a couple of cases that would make me advise someone that the priesthood might not be for them.

But they would be extreme cases and they would end up falling out of formation very early due to them.

With out knowing more all I can tell you is to stay out of it and support him.

You say your friend has decided to become a priest, therefore he has, I would assume, to have thought a lot about it before making his decision. You may find it to be a mistake; he obviously does not.

Rather than discourage him, I would pray for him that it’s the right decision that he’s making.


Lord Jesus, transform the hearts and lives of
those You are calling to serve as priests, brothers
and sisters in your Church.

Make them living reflections of Your Heart and
channels of Your Mercy to others.

Open their eyes to see Your presence in souls
around them; open their ears to the appeals of others;
inspire them with Your message of forgiveness and
comfort; strengthen them for the service of those in
need as You prepare them to reflect Your Mercy.

Lord Jesus, call many generous souls to Your service,
and transform them into ministers of Your Mercy, for
You can do all things. Amen.**



I speak as a seminarian when I say you should sit down and talk with your friend as to why you think he shouldn’t become a priest, but first examine your own motivations in wanting to talk him out of it, do you think he is not called to it? or is it for other reason?

Either way if he’s anything like me it won’t be anything he hasn’t thought of/should think of himself. friends of mine have spoken to me about my decision, so far I have found their views stem from misunderstandings on their part rather than anything else but I still appreciate their opinion and input as I know that they are motivated by genuine concern for me.

Why? I would suggest that you read this book before talking to him…and after reading it, you can give it to him as a gift…amazon.com/Many-Are-Called-Rediscovering-Priesthood/dp/0307590771

In Many Are Called, Dr. Scott Hahn, one of the most celebrated scholars and influential Catholic writers living today, enthusiastically encourages Catholics around the world to renew their focus on the sacred role of the Catholic priest. Using his unique ability to present deep spiritual and theological ideas in the language of everyday life, Dr. Hahn examines the biblical and historical roots of the priesthood to explain the centrality of the priest in the life of the Church. He brings reinvigorated attention to the many roles of the priest—provider, mediator, protector, teacher, judge, and more—all of which are united in the priest’s place as spiritual father to God’s people, and ultimately he shows that it is through the priest, empowered by God, that the continuing presence of Jesus Christ makes itself known to our world.
Lively, insightful, and engaging, Many Are Called will serve as an inspiration to students and seminarians considering a vocation, to clergy renewing their call, to Catholic readers looking to deepen their faith, and to seekers curious about one of Catholicism’s defining but least understood elements. With a foreword by the Most Reverend Timothy M. Dolan, the Archbishop of New York, this is a truly special book, one that speaks to the restless heart of humanity and reveals that our pleas for a spiritual father have already been answered

I think you should talk over your concerns with him.

Personally, I am in the application process for my diocese and if there was some reason someone thought I should not go to seminary then I would truly appreciate their input.

Are you discouraging him for his sake or yours? The priesthood is a huge calling for anyone who has recieved it, and don’t make this young man ashamed of his decision. Would you feel the same way if he were enlisting in the Marine Corps?

One subject that isn’t talked about nearly enough here is our shortage of priests, and the even more dire shortage of good priests. We should be encouraging, not DIS-couraging vocations.

I hope you pray for your friend… I know I will be praying for him.

By discouraging i guess i mean disagreeing. If he went to the seminary, i would support him? Yes. Do i think it is a good choice? for him, for some reason, no. Maybe my thinking is based on my own feelings of my friend taking this path, which is wrong. I feel as if him going to the seminary means sacrificing my current friendship, maybe i’m wrong about that. Thank you to all who replied

ah so now you understand your motives… great…

A good friend will let the friend fly free. Then the friend will always return. Tie him down and he will break free. And a good friend will be there if the bird falls and will not say, I told you so

It is hard to do this, but that is true friendship. .and it can grow through friends having different lives too.


I understand your view after reading all the replies.

But I just want to tell you that a good friendship stays for ever and nor the distance could change that. If i take my case, i’m french and i left my best friend to live in Quebec. That was hard, but despite the distance, we are in touch. Furthermore i will start the seminary like your best friend in september, and do you know the reaction of my best friend? He said to me : if you are happy and if it’s your way, I ll always support you and be with you. Those words helped me too much.

Thank you! It is hard to see my friend goes as I thought we had something special. But you are right, I guess i will put aside my feelings and support him though it pains me to see him leaving.

A good friend of mine recently applied to a nearby seminary. I am completely in love with him and have been for 4 years now. He is my best friend and I really thought we had a future together. I am completely shocked by his sudden decision, he is such a smart, young, handsome man with a bright future. I am aware his family thinks he has not though it through as well as others who have thought the same.

Thoughts and opinions?

He’d probably be a great seminarian, however I am overcome by such sadness.

Seminary is a process of discernment. It’s not taking someone out of the world altogether. If you and others are right that he hasn’t thought it through properly, then this will become apparent during the application process (to just gain entry to a seminary course one has to endure rigorous interviews and psychological testing) and then there’s six years for him to be observed and for the Church to ascertain whether he’s suitable for priesthood.

Let me say this: if he’s not suitable, he won’t last the course. If he is, then nobody should stand in his way: that would be denying him a wonderful vocation. Instead you should be supporting him with love and prayers rather than hoping that he’ll fall at the first hurdle.

He obviously thinks he has a vocation. Let him test it. The fact that you think of him as a wonderful person is a good thing, even if it’s a little bit of a wrench for you to let go of the idea of him in your future that you’d built up in your mind.

Better that he’s a happy priest living his vocation than a less than happy man in a marriage he was never quite suitable for, surely?

I feel for you Rationalist, I really do, but trust me on one thing its not a snap decision especially not at home in Ireland these days. That being said you should speak to him about his decision and if the situation seems right, about your feelings for him. Not necessarily to discourage him, but to present him with all the facts as it were.you never know you still might have a future together.

Now I don’t know all the details particular to your case but if he does have a call to the Priesthood the relationship doesn’t have to end, it is(if you can manage it) only changed I know a man going for the priesthood needs good close friends outside of the seminary and having female friends is still allowed! a deep, chaste friendship is one of the best gifts a priest can have.

You shouldn’t try to compete with God for someone! It won’t work out right.

If priesthood is God’s will for him, then it would be foolish for you or anybody to stand in the way. Whereas if it is not, he will be back anyhow.

This is one instance where you need to “let go and let God”.

My condolences for your pain.


Oh Please! they are both trying to discern God’s will, He’s not a priest or even a seminarian yet(only an applicant to seminary). Now is the time they both have to try and figure out God’s Plan! its not competing with God for someone

Good Decision :slight_smile:

God Bless You!

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