[quote="300WhiteKnights, post:1, topic:265911"]
Hi, I’m a 17 year old teenager boy who is now a senior in high school. And lately, I have been wondering if God is calling me to the priesthood. Is it too early to tell? The importance of God and Christianity has been weighing on my mind a lot lately, since a whole year in fact. Sometimes all I can think about is Christianity and the things about it that I don’t understand. This has never happened to me before, Christianity seemed boring to me initially, like studying history in school, but now its all I want to know about.
I had even entertained the thought of being a priest when I was 10. My mother encouraged me, but when I told my father, He became extremely upset and tried to talk me out of it. So I forgot about it for a while.
But now, I think God might want me to become a priest, but how do I know FOR SURE? I recognize that the priesthood is the highest of honors and an enormous responsibility, and that grates on me a bit. I am not great with people, and get anxious easily. Plus, ever since I began to ask Christ to see myself with His eyes, I see now that I have many faults.
Plus can priests have side-jobs as well? I got a scholarship for a college, and I am going to get a job. Can I keep a job and be a priest if I am called to be one? Thank you!
Read the pamphlets 'Vocations' and 'Shall I be a Priest', they are extremely informative and helpful :) They helped me and give good sound advice that helped thousands discern their calling (they sold around 80,000 copies).
The following is a list of some of the ordinary indications of a vocation, taken principally from the works of Father Gautrelet, S.J., and the Retreat Manual. No one need expect to have all these marks, but if some of them are not perceived, the person may safely say he has no vocation 1. A desire to have a religious vocation, together with the conviction that God is calling you. This desire is generally most strongly felt when the soul is calm, after Holy Communion, and in time of retreat.
2. A growing attraction for prayer and holy things in general, together with a longing for a hidden life and a desire to be more closely united to God.
3. To have a hatred of the world, a conviction of its hollowness and insufficiency to satisfy the soul. This feeling is generally strongest in the midst of worldly amusement.
4. A fear of sin, into which it is so easy to fall, and a longing to escape from the dangers and temptations of the world.
5. It is sometimes the sign of a vocation when a person fears that God may call them; when he prays not to have it and cannot banish the thought from his mind. If the vocation is sound, it will soon give place to an attraction, though Father Lehmkuhl says: “One need not have a natural inclination for the religious life; on the contrary, a divine vocation is compatible with a natural repugnance for that state.”
6. To have zeal for souls. To realise something of the value of an immortal soul, and to desire to co-operate in their salvation.
7. To desire to devote our whole life to obtain the conversion of one dear to us.
8. To desire to atone for our own sins or those of others, and to fly from the temptations which we feel too weak to resist.
9. An attraction for the state of virginity.
10. The happiness which the thought of religious life brings, its spiritual helps, its peace, merit and reward.
11. A longing to sacrifice oneself and abandon all for the love of Jesus Christ, and to suffer for His sake.
12. A willingness in one not having any dowry, or much education, to be received in any capacity, is a proof of a real vocation.
Hence we may conclude with the learned theologian, Lessius, “If anyone takes the determination of entering religion, well resolved to observe its laws and duties, there is no doubt that this resolution, this vocation, comes from God, whatever the circumstances which seem to have produced it.”
“It matters little how we commence, provided we are determined to persevere and end well,” says St. Francis de Sales; and St. Thomas lays it down that” no matter from what source our resolution comes of entering religion, it is from God”; while Suarez maintains that “generally the
It is a curious fact that although many pious and learned persons do not shrink from discouraging, in every possible way, aspirants to religious life, they would scruple to give them any help or encouragement. “A vocation must be entirely the work of the Holy Ghost,” they say. Willingly they paint the imaginary difficulties and trials of a convent life, and hint at the unhappiness sometimes to be found there; they speak of the long and serious deliberation neces-sary before one takes such a step, and thus, unintentionally perhaps, but most effectually, extinguish the glowing enthusiasm of a youthful heart. Some even assume a terrible responsibility by deliberately turning
away souls from the way into which the Master is calling them, forgetting the warning: “It is I who have chosen you,” never reflecting on the irretrievable harm they are causing by spoiling the work of God. Others calmly assure a postulant, who has been found unsuitable for a particular Order, that this is a certain sign Almighty God does not want him, that he has no vocation and should not try again.