On June 12, I was accepted into the seminary for my diocese. I’m 18, I’ve done a year at college, and I’ve struggled accepting God’s call for the past 3 years. But I finally did it. I figured I wasn’t going to know or at the very least every feel truly fulfilled if I didn’t go to seminary to see if God was truly calling me to the priesthood. I begin in August.
When I got that call from the Vocations Director I was thrilled, overjoyed actually…my parents though, were not. They took a beautiful moment for me, and made it bittersweet, talking about how they were “mourning their son’s ability to be normal” and my mom went as far as to say, “I’d rather have a gay son then a priest son, because at the very least, you’d find human love in this world.” It hurt. A lot. I understand they had this expectation of me bringing them grand kids, and they had this version of a “typical” life laid out for me…but I really need them to understand life and God are leading me elsewhere. I’ve also explained seminary is a long discernment process…no one going to seminary definitely is becoming a priest. It takes time and prayer.
A man in my parish walked up and congratulated my mom for having a son going to seminary, and she acted both indifferent, and displeased. My grandparents said it was amazing, as did my cousins, aunts, and uncles. My dad responded saying, “well I’m glad you’re all so f***ng happy.” I even overheard my mother talking to her friend saying, “this is so hard on us, he doesn’t know how much this hurts.”
I just don’t understand it. Their constant negativity is making this incredible moment for me bittersweet and almost painful. I should feel happy I’m going…and I am happy. But every time I talk about it around them, they make this face as if they smell something bad. My parents are Catholic, but very ideologically liberal and don’t regularly attend mass like I do.
They’ve been mad at me over it for 2 years, and now that I’m finally going, it’s just worse.
I just wanted some advice on how to handle this, or do you think just prayer for acceptance in their hearts (which I have been doing) is the only way?