So I committed to joining the Catholic Church in January. I haven’t started RCIA yet though. I was a Methodist all my life beforehand, and I’ve come to know Jesus, his teachings, and general theology very well. I’ve felt the call to ministry all throughout my life. The difference between a Methodist call to ministry and a Catholic call to priesthood have totally different implications however. I felt the same call when I decided to join the Church but repressed it as I never thought I would want to be a priest. Now, 3 months later, I have a burning desire for the priesthood.
My question: is this normal for new Catholics? Is there a kind of “honeymoon phase” that goes along with joining the catholic church wanting to become a priest? I ask because it will help my discernment to know if this is a common desire or if it is unique to me. Thank you all!
It’s common, not only for converts, but for people who return to the church after a long absence. Take things one step at a time. Join the church, get involved in your parish, take a few retreats to check out a vocation. Finally, pray for God’s guidance.
After you are received into the Church, you will be asked to wait a few years before you start discerning for the priesthood or religious life; this is to give you time to really start living in the sacraments. Your desire is not at all unique; the first thing to do is to sign up for RCIA this fall so you can come into the Church next Easter. Call your parish office (next week would be ok) and make an appointment to speak with a priest. He can give you encouragement and advice. Welcome Home!!
Well as a Convert myself there is always a Honeymoon period after doing something that you want to do as significant as changing one’s Religion, but you in for a wow, there is so much Liturgy/Reading/Praying/Adoration/Retreats that is awaiting you, there is 2000 years of History, have you read the “Church Fathers” like Polycarp/Ignatius, and forgive the pun but there is a great book to get (I use it all the time) Catholicism for Dummies, can be got in any Catholic Bookshop or on Amazon, you could start learning it now so as your starting your RCIA class , you will be ahead of the posse so to speak.
As for the priesthood, the Lord will let you know if you ask Him " Speak Lord for your Servant is listening" to know your Will. The Church generally asks for Converts to wait for 2 years, but that does not mean after one and a half years if you still feel called to the priesthood that you cannot look around, make enquires, you will have to see if you want to join a Religious Order (take vows of poverty, chastity, obedience) or join the secular priesthood which is directly under the Bishop, so you can look at some Orders etc from a Website write to them maybe do a live in week-end to see if this is what the Lord is calling you to.
God Bless as you start RCIA so ring the parish and get the ball rolling.
May you always walk with the Lord through His One, Holy, Catholic, Apostolic Church which He founded.:tiphat::signofcross:
P.S. Do you get EWTN the Catholic Station on Television, there is a programme on it called " The Journey Home" by Marcus Grodi who was a Protestant Pastor who changed, and he interviews different Protestant denominations who changed to be Catholic every week, its on a Monday Night, as I get it English time, you would have to look up your T.V Guide to what time its on for America. You would find it very interesting just as I do.
Yes, it’s very common for men converting to Catholicism to strongly consider the priesthood. Usually, they ask that you wait to see if the desire is still there.
Spend this time focusing on the universal call to holiness. Maybe consider a spirituality like Legions of Mary or Opus Dei? You could also join the Knights of Columbus. You need establish a “solid foundation” so to speak before entering the seminary.
Quite common, Joseph. Almost every vocation discernment retreat I’ve been on has had at least one or two recent converts present. As indicated, there is usually at least a 2-3 waiting period before one could formally apply. In the meantime though, it’s of course good to begin discerning! The RCIA will help you learn a bit more about vocation in general. And you’ll appreciate soon enough after confirmation just how much we need holy lay people in the Church as well.
Of course, just because it’s a common experience does not mean that you don’t have a call to the priesthood. There are some great convert-priests out there, and many in American history. All the founding members of the Paulist Fathers (an American religious order), for example, were converts, and the founder himself, Isaac Hecker, was a Methodist. I would recommend reading up on Hecker’s life and spiritual journey to anyone thinking of converting, or anyone converting and thinking of the priesthood.
For now, hope you can get hooked up with an RCIA program and find a good sponsor! I’m a seminarian at present–but a Catholic disciple first and foremost. I’ll never forget my RCIA experience, entering the Church side by side with other Catholics now doing lots of great things: married, single, or otherwise.
Hello, I’m a convert as well. I feel that my call to Catholicism also came with a call to religious life. It’s only been a year since I became Catholic but I feel the call just as strongly now as I did then. I find that the advice of pursuing the universal call to holiness is the best advice I received. As I do grow in holiness my desire to become a religious brother has strengthened. You need to be holy no matter what your vocation is so it’s never wasted time if you’re pursuing holiness. My advice would be to seek a spiritual director, they will be able to help you sort out what is part of the emotional high of joining the church and the way the Lord has been leading you all along. I also recommend reading some of St. Ignatius’ stuff about discernment. Just my two cents.