I’m new here and I decided to create this post and tell you my story. Not because I’m egocentric, but because I hope it may help some of you. First I want to apologize in advance for my English which i snot so perfect; please be merciful with me.
I am 21 years old and I just left seminary and what I’m about to tell you is a story of failure and hope.
Everything begins two and a half years ago. I finished high school with good results, I was already enrolled in a very good university here in Europe and I decided to leave it all because I felt God was calling me to the priesthood. I started a discernment process that lasted two years and last September I joined the novitiate of a religious congregation. Apparently, everything was going well. My family was happy, I did not have any sort of doubt about my vocation. It was simply the perfect story. The truth is that I was living in a lie or in an illusion, I was doing it all for a bad reason: I just wanted a shelter. That was priesthood for me: a shelter where to feel safe.
Now, that was not a bad thing per se, as we all need a refuge where we feel safe. The bad thing is that I realized it and didn’t do anything. I just carried on doing the same things, pretending that everything was fine. I woke up every day, wore my cassock and complied with the seminary timetable. On the outside I followed all the rules, but on the inside I was just like a robot doing meaningless actions.
And here comes the reason why this happened: I lost hope. I couldn’t see anything but a terrible future in front of me. I convinced myself that if I were to talk with someone about this or to do something about it, it would mean that I had failed completely in my life. I convinced myself that if I were to leave the seminary it would mean that I wasted my entire life.
Last Advent, though, something has happened. I was in front of the Eucharist and a question stroke me “What gift are you giving to the Baby Jesus this year?” and the answer saddened me a lot. I was offering Him a mediocre life, surely not the life He has prepared for me. And for how much I wanted to dismiss this thought, I couldn’t. So I worked up my courage and I went to talk with the Father Instructor. I explained him the situation and I realized how big is the mercy of God. At the end of my explanation he told me “Thank you for the gift you gave to Jesus”.
I decided to leave the seminary, to start university and to work on myself. I don’t know what the future holds in store for me, it’s not being easy starting anew. But I want to do it and I know it’s worth it.
The message I’d like to transmit with this post is a very simple one: don’t lose hope. Without hope a man can’t live. For how bad is your situation, for how messed up your life is, you must preserve your hope. That is what gets you going and what gives you the strength to face everything. I ask your prayers and I apologize for the long post.
Your brother in Christ