By Father Mitchel Zimmerman
Special to The Leaven
The archdiocesan vocations office wants every person in the archdiocese who has not yet discovered his or her Godgiven vocation to have a chance to hear what God desires of them.
Of course, we focus on the young people of the archdiocese, who are filled with potential to follow the Lord most closely and be fervent and fruitful disciples. But we know that these young people have many other voices competing with the uniquely powerful and loving voice of the Lord Jesus in their lives.
Our goal is to create a culture of vocations, where the voice of Jesus can be distinguished, so that the holy vocations to marriage, the priesthood and to religious life that he desires and the church needs can be realized.
Your generosity to Call to Share allows us at the archdiocese to host a number of vocations retreats and discernment events throughout the year. It also enables me to travel the archdiocese, specifically to meet with men who are thinking seriously about entering the seminary and beginning formation for the archdiocesan priesthood.
The vocation director collaborates with parishes, pastors, families, youth ministers, retreat movements, schools and religious education programs to cultivate new vocations. The vocation director can only be effective recruiting new vocations if other areas of the archdiocese are helping our young people to cultivate a prayerful loving relationship with Jesus and a generosity in responding to the graces of the sacraments.
The good news is that this is happening! We are slowly increasing the number of seminarians we have, currently 28. Your gift to Call to Share helps us as well to screen new applicants rigorously, so that the men we ordain tomorrow will be the priests that you all desire and the church needs.
We are making progress, thanks to you, and overcoming the many obstacles that could possibly discourage the miracle of new priestly vocations being realized in our church.
Please pray for us and our seminarians and know of our prayerful best wishes as you live out your vocation and consider your gift to this year’s Call to Share.