March 22, 2022
by Father Steven Huber, CSB
“How do I know if I am being called to priesthood or religious life?” This question is very common among discerners. The answer to this question may be different for each person, but there are still some common signs that can point to an answer. These signs can inform one’s discernment and help them to hear the voice of the Lord calling to them.
One of the more powerful signs is to pay attention to what other people see in you or say about you. The people in our lives such as teachers, parishioners, co-workers, and friends, often have a way of seeing gifts present in a person and calling those gifts out. Have you ever had a person ask you about priesthood or religious life, or tell you that you would be a good priest or religious? That can be a sign that God is calling you to serve him- especially if several different people are saying the same thing!
Another sign can be found by reflecting on the true longings of your heart. What feelings arise when you think about priesthood or religious life? Are they feelings of fear and dread, or feelings of peace and longing? Does reflecting on priesthood and religious life fill you with a deep desire to be of service to others, and to follow Christ in a radical way? Even if those feelings aren’t present at first, if you find them growing in you over time, that can be a sign of God’s call.
It’s also important to be aware of how different events of your life may be guiding you towards a vocation, or to the place where you need to be to hear God’s call most effectively. For example: When I graduated from university, I had no plans to move back to my hometown. I ended up moving back, however, because I was offered a job teaching music at a middle school, and none of my other plans had panned out. This allowed me to reconnect with my childhood parish, and with the new pastor there, who became my first spiritual director. As I continued to explore priesthood, it felt like God was removing all the obstacles before me, to truly allow me to embrace the path towards priesthood and religious life. If you sense the same thing happening in your life, that is a sign that God is leading you down the path he has chosen for you.
Above all, when discerning one’s vocation, it is important to remember the words of St. Irenaeus of Lyons, who said that “The glory of God is human beings fully alive.” Our vocation should be that place where we can truly be ourselves, and truly exist as God has called us to. It should be a place where we grow and flourish, by allowing God to lead us closer to him.
May God continue to bless you as you discern your vocation. May he open your ears to hear his call and give you the grace to respond to that call in love.
by Father Kevin Mannara, CSB Religious life involves living out our baptism in a more intentional and publicly prophetic way. That is why we take vows, including one to be […]
by Father Steven Huber, CSB When a person is discerning religious life, these questions naturally come to mind. After all, when we hear the word “obedience,” it does have a […]
by Father Eduardo Rivera, CSB Before we can answer the question above, we first must know that all priests make promises, but only some priests take vows. Are you surprised? […]
by Father Steven Huber, CSB It seems that when a person is discerning the priesthood, one of the most common questions that is asked is “how long does it take […]
by Father Steven Huber, CSB This is a question that often gets asked by young men who are discerning a vocation- and rightly so! After all, don’t all priests celebrate […]