Strange experience in Church.... Any thoughts?


Hi everyone.

So, I was in Church today praying the Rosary after Mass. All of a sudden, this man came up to me, interrupted me, and said:

“Hello, I couldn’t help noticing you beside me on the communion rail earlier (at Mass). Would you consider a vocation to the priesthood?”

He then told me that he’s a religious brother ‘recruiting’ people to the priesthood. I responded by saying that I’m not thinking about it at the moment. I wasn’t really expecting this (especially while praying) and didn’t really enter into a discussion with the guy. He left shortly after. I really didn’t know what to say!

I was just wondering, does this happen, as far as you’re aware? Do people approach you in Church asking if you’re interested in a vocation (at the most inappropriate times, I should add)?

Needless to say, I couldn’t focus for the remaining part of the Rosary after he left. What if today was a Sign?

I should have asked for his business card or contact details just in case, I guess. I was just taken aback by this whole thing and wasn’t really ready to interact with this person.


I have had that happen to me before. I think it has to do with the perception that there are no vocations in any number to the priesthood that people feel they need to push people to consider it.


Maybe you conversed with an angel.


Well, if you change your mind and would one day like to explore that, you could contact your church. I’m sure they’d love to have you.

However, if you have no other feelings in that regard, and don’t in the future, then it probably wasn’t a sign.


It could be a sign. God does work in mysterious ways. I have had family members tell me to become a priest before and have thought of it many times and am kinda discerning it but I have never had a complete stranger tell me that.



This has happened to me a few times. Complete strangers but never one that said they were recruiting. I lady told me I should look into the Shrine of the Most blessed sacrament after telling me I would make a good priest. I knew nothing about the Shrine at the time. So I looked it up. The strange thing is I was going to Alabama in two weeks. Was unable to visit the Shrine though.

Being 43, single, and never married…it is an option I am contemplating. Seem to be road blocked every time I bring it up or try to contact the vocational department. I am not even sure what kind of options I have or even if it is possible due to some past issues. Nice to know that it happens to others though.



The Holy Ghost works on attraction. Any attraction to that vocation?



Well, I’m very devout, and I tried giving it a thought once or twice before. But it’s never been something which I’ve seriously considered. I’m quite happy with my life right now, although I still need to determine whether it’s what the Lord wants from me. I’m praying for enlightenment on what my vocation is in general, although the priesthood seems quite a bit far-fetched. But who knows?


I’ve never come across anyone “recruiting” (if anything it sounds a bit creepy) but I have had people telling me (including strangers) they thought I’d make a good priest, or asking if I was going to be a priest. Admittedly, it’s more than a bit unnerving and the first couple of times I just wrote it off as an eerie coincidence or presumed that they’d been talking to someone who already knew. That said, when it happens more than just once or twice, and you realise that there’s absolutely no way these people can know, it’s time to start paying attention.

I’ve come to realise that it’s these ordinary folk in the pew whose views matter most to me - after all it’s these people who I’m called to minister too and, particularly,y they older ones, will have seen / known more than a few priests in their time.


That is very interesting. Is older people that bring me the question. I am 43 but look younger than my age and being a daily mass attendant at a few churches. I am usually one of the youngest in the crowd. As Matthew Kelly tells, you want to know the contributors of the church go to daily mass. I also think he states that only 7 percent of Catholics are active and contributing. Blows my mind when you think that over a billion of us on the planet…yet only really 7 percent of us are active members or ‘dynamic’ members. If we increased that percent by 2 to 3 percent. The world would be a better place.

Maybe I should stop quoting and start living it by checking into becoming a Shepard. Live the word and not type it out. This place is awesome though! Being new, I get to have all my questions andswered and put myself out there also to have my questions answered. I love it.



It could very well have been a sign. But it’s still a big decision, and God will make it clear to you that he’s calling you if he is. Pray about it a little, and consider yourself lucky for possibly meeting an angel! :rolleyes: :smiley:



I think today was a sign for you at some level. I think you should contemplate the possibility of becoming a priest with an open mind.

I was in seminary (St. Meinrad) for a year and it was a wonderful experience. I stepped away due to identity conflict, and that’s what it boils down to, identity.

Let me give you an example. Troy Aikman was one of the best football quarterbacks of all time. Troy Aikman also won the state chamionship in typing in high school! So he is an athlete, but certainly he has skills in other areas. Now he is a very good analyst for Fox Sports.

You have to take your own inventory on who you are and see if priesthood is a right fit for you. I would recommend reading Priests for the Third Millenium by Cardinal Dolan. Also, see if there is a discernment retreat you can attend.

I would say the guy interrupting your rosary after Mass is not a sign…the sign to me is you praying a rosary after Mass.

Here is a link for book:


People who are discerning often find encouragement in people (even those they don’t know) asking them if they’ve considered a vocation to the priesthood. It can be intimidating to even approach one’s pastor about it, and they might not have someone (such as a youth ministry director) they can approach. Sometimes it takes another person reaching out to them. Anyway, the only people I know who came away from time in the seminary a worse person than before were those who were dishonest with the vocation director and psychologist and should not have been there in the first place.


If you are a single, devout-appearing male alone at an active church, you will have people say things like this to you. It’s happened to me on multiple occassions.

I see nothing in it that makes me think it is a “sign” or has any supernatural origin. The person, in the first place, was overzealous and wrong to be interrupting you during your prayer like that and very likely he’s mentally imbalanced.

Still, every single person should contemplate his vocation proactively rather than letting it happen by accident, so if this is a reminder to do so, so be it.


If it happens again, just answer, “Here I am, Lord.” :thumbsup:


To all those wondering, no - I don’t think I have a vocation to the priesthood at the moment.

  • I don’t see myself doing it.
  • My conscience does not tell me to do it
  • The very fact that I was taken aback by this person is in my opinion a clear indicator that no such calling exists within me as of yet.

Moreover, yes, I found it quite inappropriate that he would interrupt me while I was clearly praying (I held the rosary in my hands, I certainly wasn’t just counting the beads).

Having said thus, I’m not closing my doors to it, since I’m still young (21), just started working, and am still unsure about what God wants from me. Should he clearly call me to it, I’d consent to it at once.


DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit