Vocation Identification

How do the priests or spiritual director help the one who is seeking his/her own vocations? Will the priest/spiritual director always tell them that the vocation is to be religious life (just because the priest/ spiritual director want more people to follow religious path)?

I am thinking if I should find a priest for a talk, but I guess he will say to follow the religious life ? :confused:

Praying to the Holy Spirit to give you guidance & direction in your life.

The Holy Ghost works on attraction. Vocation Directors usually go off the attractions the person is experiencing, and encourage them to investigate further.

Interior silence is one of the greatest favors you can do for you and God both.

Anyone who pressures you into a particular vocation needs to back off. The decision is the individual’s and must be theirs entirely or the validity of their profession comes into question.


No, they don’t always suggest the religious life.

When my mum was a teenager she was part of a guide troop run by Nuns, she spoke to one of the sisters about becoming a Nun and was told no, the religious life is not for you. You should go out and propagate the faith.
She went on to have seven children all of whom have served at the Altar at some stage, so I reckon sister got it right.

It can be a bit nerve wracking talking to a priest like that, I know from experience, but from what I’ve seen they want to help you find what you should be doing with your life, not pressure you to do something you don’t want to.
The emphasis is on finding the right place for you to be not just filling quotas.

Besides if everyone took a vow of celibacy, where would the next generation of Catholics come from?

I am thinking if I should find a priest for a talk, but I guess he will say to follow the religious life ?

That’s not what a spiritual director is there for - it’s not up to them to tell you what your vocation is, rather they’re there to help you work it out for yourself. There’d be little point in an SD telling someone what they should do because that might not be what the person themselves wants to do, the person has to come to that decision for themselves.

I’m one of those priests / SDs you speak of. If someone is serious enough to be coming asking me about that and they have no serious obstacles, more often then not I will encourage them to visit a seminary / go on a discernment retreat - from there it really varies based on what the person experienced & discerned on the retreat. I think the majority who think about a priestly or religious probably don’t have a vocation just like the majority who date this girl don’t marry her; however, unless you go for that experience of being there it’s hard to know if it is for you.

The aim of whoever you go to for vocational direction is to help guide you in whatever direction God is calling. For some it could be religious life but one doesn’t have to become a priest, a nun or a monk to serve the Lord.

Career choices are vocations such as doctors, nurses, teachers, financial advisors, full time parents etc. The list is endless and one never knows where God is leading. Furthermore, I know of a couple of women who were sisters until God called them out religious life. One is currently in a serious relationship another got married for about 20 years until her death a few years ago. I also know of a man who was in seminary for a short while and then without completing his studies, he later left married his long time girl friend who he dumped to pursue the priestly life. He now has a son who was ordained as a priest a few years ago.

You never know where God is going to take you therefore it is important to be patient and enjoy the ride.

Actually, is the vocation our choice? or is God’s choice?
For example, will God be really calling someone to be a Priest/ Nun but himself/herself wants to have a marriage life? Or if God is really calling that person, God will make that person to have very strong interest on priesthood, and make that person willing to give up everything else?

No, not always. I disclosed that I had been thinking about the priesthood, but my spiritual director has been counseling me on both the priesthood and marriage. (The latter more so, even.) It is about discerning God’s call, and then following it. One discerns because he does not yet know. Priests understand that.

I think he will go off if he thinks it is possible, if you are mentally, intellectually and physically able to live the life you are considering, and if there is an attraction. I know people who have felt this attraction for more than 10 years, which is not the same as something that is only there for a few weeks.

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