Thursday, November 17, 2005

Vocation Attraction

I live with visible reminders of the shortage of priests in the USA. I am part of a cluster of parishes (two, 16 miles apart) which share one priest, a man closer to 60 than 50. The chaplain of the Newman Center at the local state university is also assigned to a church 15 miles away. "The harvest is plenty, but laborers are few." And we do "beg the harvest master" at every Sunday Mass with a prayer for vocations created by our diocese.

But what is going to draw men to the priesthood (and women to a religious life)? John Mallon, a Contributing Editor to Inside the Vatican magazine, provides insight into the answer:

There is no secret to attracting vocations. There are plenty of them out there. A bishop who tolerates dissent and ignores abuses will not attract them. A bishop who boldly stands up for Christ and His Church, and Church teachings, despite all costs and opposition, will attract them. These young people are the future of the Church. Whether or not they are welcomed into their rightful place to which the Lord is calling them lies in the hands of each individual bishop.

Read the entire article.