The people of God want holy, joyful, and generous priests. Our Heavenly Father desires this for His people as well.

The discernment of a vocation to serve God’s church rarely takes place in a thunderbolt moment; rather, if you are open to God’s call, it is a gradual realization that occurs over several years. Throughout your discernment process be patient with yourself.

First, continue to pray to the Lord daily that He makes His will known to you. Pray that God will continue to reveal His will in the quiet of your prayer. Be sure to set aside time for prayer every day.

Second, continue to attend Mass and frequent the Sacrament of Reconciliation. These two important sources of sacramental grace will help you listen for, and hear the voice of God in your heart.

Third, listen for God’s call in your reading of Sacred Scripture, and other spiritual works. Engage in charitable work, and attend parish and diocesan events which seek to help you in your vocation discernment.

Many discernment journeys undergo detours, crises and moments of resistance, both major and minor in nature. However, authentic moments of grace-filled clarity and inexpressible movements of the heart are also part of this journey. Be patient and steadfast in your discernment.

If you are being called by God to serve His Church as a priest, any progress in your discernment that moves you toward this end should leave you feeling more fully yourself, more fulfilled, more happy, and more fully alive than when discerning any other vocation.

You are strongly encouraged to speak to the Diocese’s Vocation Director, Fr. Jim Mazzone, your parish priest, a religious brother, a religious sister, a mentor, or a family member about your discernment. God oftentimes works through the people around you to offer you encouragement and support.