Enter Seminary straight after school or wait a year?

I’m seriously discerning my vocation to the priesthood now and I’m finishing high school at the end of this year. Should after I have applied with the diocese and a gap year is not required, do you think it would be a good idea to wait a year after I’ve finished high school to discern my vocation more. I’ve been discerning for about two years now and I really want to become a priest.

God Bless

None here can say… Be guided by your vocation advisor, who will see things in and about you that you might not see, and most importantly by the prompting of the Holy Spirit. He will guide you.


Depends on how much you’ve discerned already. Two things come to mind, though. 1. A gap year also allows you time to get focused on something else, and maybe sidetracked from your true vocation. 2. Discernment doesn’t stop when you go into the seminary. It is an ongoing thing until you are actually ordained.

My nephew went to seminary right from high school. He stayed three years, then left to enter Notre Dame for a year. He said he was having conflicting thoughts on marriage vs. priesthood. That year at Notre Dame cleared his doubts, and he returned to the seminary. He has been a missionary priest for 35 years now, confident in his vocation. I think you should enter the seminary now, as you feel the desire. Later, if you have doubts, take the time needed to be sure what God intends for you. Good luck and God bless.

Actually it continues even after ordination.

Discernment never ends.

I would consult the vocations director and the seminary discernment team.

Each person is different and they assist much better than we can here.


I thought about the same thing that you are thinking. However i just felt deep down that i was ready for this huge commitment to God. It is something i want to do and i felt that stalling my call will just make me feel bad. Currently i am a senior in HS and just finish applying for my diocese and just waiting word on my acceptance! Please pray for me!

Sure! I’ll pray for you. Whats involved when you apply and what sort of questions do they ask


Thanks for your prayers!

Well they ask you some personal questions about your life. dating,family,school, and just your outlook on life. You will be asked questions you have never been asked before so prepare for that. However dont worry! This was a fun expirience for me and im glad i went through it. They just want to know the truth about you so they can determine if you are called or not.

Really this depends on how sure you are. I myself went to seminary straight out of high school, because I was pretty sure that God wants me to be a diocesan priest. Ultimately it comes down to how sure you are, and how comfortable you are going to seminary. Personally, if you feel fairly confident, I’d recommend going. If you’re just out of high school, you’ll probably go to a college seminary, so you’ll be going to college while being in a seminary. Overall, it’s a very good environment to discern in, and you’re still getting a college education in case you decide to withdraw. If you want a good idea of what the application process, and seminary, are like, just take a look through my blog.

My nephew considered the priesthood, and then went to a state college. While he was in college he decided that the priesthood was his path. His parents, my sister and BIL, talked him into staying in the state college and getting his business degree. They approached it much the same way I’ve heard parents approach their children about getting married young - if it’s meant to be it will still be there later. He graduated with his BBA and then joined the seminary. He will be ordained next year.

One of the “best” parish priests I ever had the pleasure to know spent 4 years in the Marines before deciding to become a priest - his experiences gave him a unique outlook on life.

As stated above discernment never ends and it only begins with the decision to become a priest.

As for waiting, whatever you decide is best is probably for the best. I just wouldn’t rush into joining the priesthood for fear that taking a year off might sidetrack you, that tells me you are not sure of your decision.

Thanks everyone for your answers. Since I started this thread, the days of discernment I’ve had since then has made my soul screaming to become a priest. I don’t there is any other occupation in my life i want to do to do other than being a priest. it seems the lord answered this thread for me


Excellent advice!

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