For Parents

When a young man expresses his desire to enter seminary to his family it is a great blessing when his parents receive the news with joy.

It is not uncommon, however, for parents of a young man who is discerning a priestly vocation to harbor reservations. Parents who love their children want the best for them, they want them to be happy and successful in life. When a young man expresses a desire to study for the priesthood, it might catch his parents off guard and they might worry that such a life could not bring him happiness.

But hear the words of Christ who says to His followers: “Do not be afraid.” To have a priest in the family is a great blessing, but sometimes it takes time to realize that. If God is truly offering the priesthood to your son, He will provide for your son’s happiness.

As his parents, the main thing is to be understanding and encouraging of your son. Ask him how you might assist and support him. Just asking the question will mean a great deal to your son and will reveal your unconditional love to him as he strives to pursue the Lord’s will.

It is important that, as he tries to figure out whether he should apply to seminary, that his privacy be respected. Ask him whether you should keep his discernment confidential for the time being. In the meantime, take an interest in his vocation and learn more about it. There are many useful resources on this website, and our Vocations team is always available to speak with you.

The most important thing, of course, is to pray for your son. Give thanks to God for his life and ask the Lord to assist him with the grace of clarity and courage in following his vocation.

— Source: Diocese of Bridgeport

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