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Consider Priesthood | An Initiative of the Catholic Diocese of Sacramento, California
The Catholic Diocese of Sacramento, California
Office of Vocations - 2110 Broadway - Sacramento, CA 95818 - considerpriesthood@scd.org

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This website is sponsored by the Catholic Diocese of Sacramento to help young men answer the divine call to embrace the ministerial priesthood. It also serves as a resource for parents to assist them in fostering vocations among their children.

Vocation Boom

Discernment Reflection: Sacrifice

This summer I have meet a lot of people and the usual question comes up “How long until  you are ordained?”  I have to admit its exciting to say ” in two years” and then we talk about seminary and how long it takes and the concluding remarks usually go along these lines ” Well, stay strong two years fly by” to which I reply “If it is anything like this last six I’ll be ordained tomorrow”.   I’ve also had a conversation which takes second place easily and it goes something like this ” Yea, I don’t think I’m gonna be priest/ With my personality I don’t think I”m called to the priesthood, but I”m open”. I think this is the saddest statement any man can make about the priesthood.  I often think it means “It’s crossed my mind but I don ‘t really like the idea so I won’t say no but I am not saying yes”
Our Lord tells us in the gospel that unless a grain of wheat dies it bears not fruit, it just stays a grain of wheat. Well, the whole Christian life is like that.  For some reason, perhaps cultural or societal conditioning, many people think or want life will give them maximum comfort and satisfaction with minimal effort, we all want the good life. The ancient Greeks certainly prized the good life but unlike us it was something attained, something for which one worked and fought. If you don’t agree with me and don’t want to read the philosophers read The Odyssey, even the cliff notes.Perhaps I am making a bold claim here in that this is is case and perhaps I am wrong, but this is not only an observation but a reflection worth writing about.
When a person decides to follow a path, to obtain a goal he has to make sacrifices but there is also recompense for those sacrifices, pay off, if you will. When a man enters priestly formation that is not always the case. There a number of years between day one and the day of ordination. Yes there are definitely mile markers which signal we are getting closer but more important than that is sense of the good life, true fulfillment. Not always fun, not always happiness but fulfillment. I’ve had less than beautiful experiences but have always been fulfilled.  We as human beings need and want a life that demands sacrifice that challenges us to put ourselves aside and reach for something bigger. It’s the only way we get anything worth having.
So why is this a discernment reflection? Because you, the young man reading this, need to know that you have to make sacrifices in life but that they are worth it. Whether it is the sacrifices you have to make to be a holy man, the sacrifice of celibacy or the sacrifice of fatherhood, they all lead to our greatest good-heaven. Once you can accept this and make the sacrifices you can see the fruits of it, firstly in your contentment in life. There’s only one way to eternal happiness, the Cross, and there is only one way to earthly happiness as well. We weren’t made to be a single grain of wheat, we were made to bear abundant fruit.
 

Summer in the Shrine

Well…welll…well…Just as I was feeling pleased with myself about posting I lost track of time. The last few weeks have been full of a lot of activity so I will try and re cap here as best as I can.

Our FIAT missions are in full swing as we begin our second and final month for this summer’s operation. On June 25th we had our “Discerner Open House” which was quite an event. We had nine young men attend ranging in age from 17-29 and all in different points of discernment from “being open” to seriously considering the priesthood and seminary. Please keep them in your prayers. In just a few weeks we will have our discernment retreat and our final Discerner Open House, please pray for those events as well. If you are a young man between 17-30 residing in the Diocese of Sacramento and are interested in attending you can contact our diocesan office of Vocations at 916-733-0258 or considerpriesthood@scd.org.

There’s two new articles you can check out down below in our featured links section. I found them pretty interesting as well. Also this article is pretty interesting as well.  I think it is pretty true; sadly it is hard for people, even with holy and noble intentions,  to take up their cross and follow the Lord when it comes to discernment. Often times we begin with ourselves in discernment and not God…which is… rather…interesting since no matter to which vocation we are called He does the calling. Anyway, enough of my rambling check the article out!  This article about the Holy Father and the priesthood has been out for a while but I missed the boat in getting it out here, give it a read!

June 22 was the feast of Corpus Christi and at St Thomas More it was celebrated with a lovely procession around our parish grounds. Corpus Christi is my favorite feast (outside of Christmas and the Triduum) so I was happy to be there. Then last Sunday, June 29, Feast of Sts Peter and Paul was my farewell party at the parish as well.  It wasn’t really a farewell, but rather a celebration of the last year together. I say this because I was blessed by God to form relationships with many people there which will not end with the pastoral year and I hope, God willing, to go back several times and even offer Mass once a priest. A shout out to all the people who worked so hard to put the party on and mad thanks for all the love from everybody.

On June 19th was a meeting of the Sacramento Catholic Forum, Radio Santisimo was present to promote the radio and to hear Auxiliary Bishop Myron Cotta Speak.  We even took a selfie (which I will post once I upload the photos from my phone). His Excellency, Bishop Cotta, shared the story of his call; to conversion, the priesthood and the episcopate. It was very moving and inspiring. Bishop Cotta is a man of great spirituality who has no qualms in sharing that.

Lastly, I am pleased to announce that we have two new seminarians for the Diocese of Sacramento. Bishop Soto accepted Stephen Wood and Ivan Franco as candidates to the priesthood.  This month they will interview for seminary and if accepted start the path to priesthood in August at Mt Angel Seminary. Soon we will have pictures and more information on this two new seminarians.

I just saw this video on the priesthood. It’s a bit long, nine minutes but take the time to watch. It was a great reminder for me as I watched and hopefully inspiring for you. Consider it! Consider Priesthood!

 

Summer in the Shrine

 

It’s been awhile since I’ve posted in such quick succession so I’m almost at a lost as what to say but here we go.

Last Thursday was graduation at Paradise High School and so I went up, we had a number of kids graduate most of whom were in either youth group or Confirmation class. It was a nice ceremony. All things considered it was brief, funny and most importantly recognized the both the accomplishment and future of these young adults. Then followed a few graduation parties.

Saturday was Fr Eric Flore’s ordination day. It was, as always a beautiful event. At one point I was standing next to Mike Ritter during the ordination rite proper and thought “Mike’s next” and then after that “Wait! That mean’s after Mike’s class I”m next”. Eric’s joy was inspiring and encouraging.

Sunday I was in Paradise again and Sunday evening I was the Master of Ceremonies for Eric’s Mass of Thanksgiving there. Fr Eric ( I keep forgetting) did his pastoral year there and so after celebrating in St Joseph’s in Lincoln where he did pastoral ministry in his deacon year. He had a great crew of kids serving and our very own Jeremy Santos was the thurifer. I don’t doubt that a few vocational seeds were soon on that great day of celebration. Fr Eric celebrated well, only a few rookie mistakes ;).

While I was up North our FIAT crew was at St Vincent’s in Vallejo, I heard they spied a few guys taking literature that was put out. This coming week they will be at St Joseph’s in Vacaville.  Please keep them in your prayers.

Sadly, a priest in Phoenix, AZ, Fr Kenneth Walker, FSSP, was murdered in the rectory by what are believed to be burglars. The priest he lived with was hurt badly and is in critical but stable condition. Fr Walker was only 28 years old and two years a priest. In your kindness pray for them both.

In two weeks we begin our discernment activities for this summer and so far we have five people interested. Please pray for the events and that the Holy Spirit will move many men to answer the call and give them the courage to do the things necessary for their vocation.

Stay tuned for more info and hopefully photos of all that’s going on!

 

 

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The blog articles to the right are authored by the Seminarians of the Diocese of Sacramento. Coming from a variety of backgrounds, we have all come to discern a calling to become priests in the Catholic Church. Feel free to follow along in our journey to this great vocation. Questions welcome.

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Archbishop Dolan ordains 5 priests to the Archdiocese of New York   Why Not?   God in the Streets of New York City   Deacon Mike reflects upon his vocation to the priesthood.