God calling you to the Religious Life, Diaconate or Priesthood?
“Did you hear that?” We hear or say this phrase all the time because we are looking for confirmation in our lives. The same goes for what we might be hearing from Jesus. When we think God is calling us to the priesthood or religious life, we begin a process called discernment. Using our heart and our head (and the hearts and heads of others), we reach out to God more often in prayer asking for his help to confirm our thoughts. We also reach out to others, especially religious and priests to gain their opinion and insight concerning our experiences.
What can I do next?
Practice the faith. We will need to be reminded that the whole point of our lives is to grow in a deep, intimate and loving relationship with God. This is the first step for any young person desiring to discern any call in life.
Enter into the Silence. Silence is key to sanity and wholeness. We can only “hear” the voice of God if we are quiet. Take out the ear buds of your iPhone, iPod, and iTunes and listen to God, the great I AM. Young people should try to spend 15 minutes of quiet prayer each day – this is where you can begin to receive clear direction in your lives.
Be a good disciple. Some bishops say, “We do not have a vocation crisis; we have a discipleship crisis.” Young people can become true followers of Jesus Christ by serving those around them. By discovering your call to discipleship, you also discover your particular call within the Church.
Ask God. Ask God what He wants for your life and know He only wants what is good for you. If, in fact, you are called to the priesthood or consecrated life, it will be the path to great joy and contentment.
In the immortal words of a famous sneaker manufacturer: “Just do it!” If you feel that God is inviting you to “try it out,” apply to the seminary or religious order. Remember, the seminary or convent (or Friary), is a place of discernment. You will not be ordained or asked to profess vows for many years, providing ample opportunity to explore the possibility of a call to priesthood or religious life.
Anyone interested in exploring a vocation to the priesthood contact Fr. Tony at firstname.lastname@example.org
The following websites might also provide more information which might help.