I Don;t Know What to Do


#1

Hi everyone,
I am struggling with my vocation. On one hand, I have talked to a Jesuit and a diocesan vocation director, and have contemplated going to the seminary. I feel very drawn to the priesthood and almost feel as if I need to go to the seminary. Yet, on the other hand, I have the desire to be a husband and father. I want to have a family with a good number of children. I pray to God everyday, and it seems that both of these callings feel as they are both obligatory. Is it possible one is called to be a married priest? Both of these callings sit side by side, and neither seems to put itself in front of the other. I am just asking for some advice and prayers.
God Bless


#2

One piece of advice I was given about this situation is to go to Adoration two days in a row. Take a notebook and talk to Jesus about the pros and cons of each. The first day write about the priesthood and the second day write about married life. You should be closer then. Also, get a spiritual director if you don’t have one and talk to them about it.

God bless, you can’t discern on your own.

Jeff


#3

[quote="UnworthyApostle, post:1, topic:196913"]
Hi everyone,
I am struggling with my vocation. On one hand, I have talked to a Jesuit and a diocesan vocation director, and have contemplated going to the seminary. I feel very drawn to the priesthood and almost feel as if I need to go to the seminary. Yet, on the other hand, I have the desire to be a husband and father. I want to have a family with a good number of children. I pray to God everyday, and it seems that both of these callings feel as they are both obligatory. Is it possible one is called to be a married priest? Both of these callings sit side by side, and neither seems to put itself in front of the other. I am just asking for some advice and prayers.
God Bless

[/quote]

Do you have a spiritual director?


#4

You need a spiritual director. Right now, it is not possible to be a married priest in the Roman Rite, You will have to choose one, and a spiritual director will help you.


#5

Thank you for all your advice. I do not talk to a regular spiritual director as of right now. I am technically a Roman Rite, but I will probably switch to one of the eastern churches, I attend a Maronite parish regularly, as I am very eastern in belief. Now, I see celibacy as a calling, but a seperate calling from priesthood. That is, I have a view similar to the Byzanitne and churches of the Orient that states it is monks who are more the model of celibacy than the priest. But, I will try to find a good director to discuss this with. God Bless


#6

If you make a switch to a different sui juris Church you will have a long wait before any possible consideration for priesthood.

First, when you do switch do not mention anything about this in the letter you write to the bishop.

Second, before you write the letter they will expect you to spend at least a year in an Eastern parish. Then at least 3 or more years before they would even consider you as a candidate for the priesthood. If you marry in that time and the Church you join does ordain married men you might not be allowed to pursue ordination because of the appearance that you are trying to skirt the discipline against such a thing in the Latin Church.


#7

Thank you ByzCath for the infromation on switiching rites. See, it is not becuase I want to dodge the Latin discipline, but I am actually considering it is God's purpose for me to be married and be a priest. I was very much in love with a girl and was about to get married at one point, but broke it off with her due to discernment. I grew very fond of celibacy and have contemplated it for almost a year, but it seems that God may not be calling me to it. I am not ruling it out, but my life has been quite a journey. I have gone from evangelicism/Lutheranism, New Age/Judasism/Islam, to Roman Catholicsm. I now happen to be practicing as an eastern christian due it seeming a natural place for me to abide. I so much love the patristic theology such as theosis, and the incocnography is much better to me than statues. Perhaps God has just brought me to another place in my journey of life, but I shall see. I am just saying that God has sent me through a roller coaster thus far and anything now seems possible.
God Bless


#8

While you may think this, some may say that it is not God’s will for you as you where born into the Latin Church.

As far as I know you will find it hard to be considered as a priestly candidate any of the Byzantine Churches.

They wish to avoid the appearance that they are condoning men skirting the Latin discipline.

Which, technically, you will be trying to do as you feel you are called to do so.

The question comes down to will the Church, through the bishop, recognize this Call.

I do not think it will.

But good luck and I will pray for you.


#9

UA it can't hurt to study at seminary, get married and serve God as a married deacon. You don't have to be a priest to serve God. You can serve him anywhere you are. It is great that you have the desire to serve.


#10

If i were in your situation i would become a deacon what ever you do dont switch religions. don’t leav the present god gave you unopened there are ways to work things in our church talk to a preist,ect. god bless


#11

I haven’t read any other responses so maybe someone else covered this already, but during a period in my life where I was strongly discerning the priesthood, I talked a lot to my associate pastor (a young, orthodox, and passionate priest). His advice to me was to look beyond the desire to be a father and see if it is a call. He said that it is natural and every man, priest or not, wants to be a father because it is a beautiful thing. However, many of us are called to be a father in a different sense. Does an entire parish have enough children for you?
I do not believe you are called to be a married priest because I don’t believe that’s God’s will for the Church. However, you may consider many lay options if you still feel that the seminary isn’t you place: secular religious orders, permanent diaconate, confraternities, youth ministry, etc.
I know for me, one of the things that attracted me most to the seminary was how beautiful the brotherhood was amongst the guys and to some extent that still attracts me. It can be frustrating to feel like men of our own heart are few and that nearly all enter the sem. Always seek God’s will. If it is His will for you to be a priest He will fill the desire for children and fatherhood that you seek and even overwhelm it. If it is His will for you to be a biological father in marriage then He will fill your desire for greater holiness and overwhelm that.
Look up the prayer of Thomas Moore (I believe). He talks about seeking God’s will, and I for one know it can be difficult to discern sometimes.
God bless,
B


#12

[quote="Brass_Player, post:10, topic:196913"]
If i were in your situation i would become a deacon what ever you do dont switch religions. don't leav the present god gave you unopened there are ways to work things in our church talk to a preist,ect. god bless

[/quote]

The Eastern Catholic Churches are Catholic, they are not another religion.

As for all the suggestions that a man who feels called to marriage and the priesthood should consider the diaconate I must say this......

The diaconate is different from the priesthood, it is not some sort of junior priest.

A man in the Latin Catholic Church can not be called to both marriage and the priesthood. A man in the Eastern Catholic Churches may be called to both as long as he marries before ordination but in the USA he may find it hard to find a bishop willing to accept him as a candidate.

Though it is the tradition of many of the Eastern Catholic Churches to ordain married men to the priesthood it is still uncommon in the USA for many reasons.


#13

Ok, I am going to get PRACTICAL with you here:

My question would be....how old are you? If you are still living at home I would suggest you get a college degree and a career and support yourself. Then you can truly make an informed decision about vocation. A college degree is like a high school diploma used to be. If you are called to be married you will need a career and MONEY because if you follow the Church's teaching then you must accept that the primary purpose of marriage is children...and children cost money. Additionally, in case you go to seminary and find that is not what God is calling you to, you have something to fall back on. Yes, God wants us to trust him but he also wants us to use our brains.


#14

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