Six ordained as priests [Diocesan]
#21
(05-28-2009, 01:04 PM)StrictCatholicGirl Wrote:
(05-27-2009, 04:51 PM)glgas Wrote: Here is the USCCB analysis of the 2009 ordinations countrywide. The good new is, that the percentage of the American born priest is increasing, not so good news is that the average age is still over 35

That's not necessarily bad news to me. How long does preparing for the priesthood take these days? Ideally, 6 years? So if a young man enters the seminary at 30 he'll be ordained around age 36. I certainly don't believe the process should delayed or prolonged, but with a longer period of discernment it makes for more dedicated priests with true vocations. That's my opinion, of course. 

- Lisa

It is bad news because if they start later they serve less time. The lack of the priests is the most serious problem what the Church faces.

Also the majority of the men are taken by women before their year 30, and there is a well founded concern that many of the non taken are homosexuals. It is much harder to 'take' a seminarian or priests than a bachelor. (I believe that the marriage is God's greatest natural gift after the free will, but the present Church law requires celibacy)

laszlo
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#22
(05-28-2009, 01:30 PM)glgas Wrote: It is bad news because if they start later they serve less time.

No, because we're all living longer these days.

Quote: Also the majority of the men are taken by women before their year 30, and there is a well founded concern that many of the non taken are homosexuals.

No, again, because most people are waiting longer to marry these days, too. 

- Lisa
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#23
I do not think it is bad news either.  I seen it many times, a man goes to college gets a degree, goes into the world, and realizes it is not for him.  Then decides to become a priest.

It is good on a lot of levels.  It is a mature decision, and he has already been out in the world.  It is much better than a younger man going into the seminary but is tempted to leave to see the world and does.

What you have then is a priest is firmly committed to his vocation since he has already been in the world, and does not care for it.
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#24
glgas  and Lisa, you are both right  :thumb:, in a very real sense.

I don't quite see a revival of the minor seminary (high school) now (who knows what may happen in the future) though that was the normative route to the priesthood pre VII for both religious and diocesan (secular, as they were called in pre VII days) priests, except the Jesuits, who never operated a minor seminary system, though they had a large network of prestigious all male prep schools (which many  are now coed).  The tradition of boarding high schools (Catholic, non-Catholic sects, and secular) has also largely disappeared in the US.  I'd assume that there wouldn't be a large clientele at the moment to justify the expense, and most dioceses and orders wouldn't have the resources to reopen them.  Besides which, though it is entirely personal speculation, I'd guess that many bishops, in the aftermath of the sexual abuse scandal, would be afraid to death of having such an institution in their responsibility.  Better to leave the kids with the parents.

As I had mentioned, the Church seems to be emphasising discerning one's vocation, and following through with that, at an earlier age then in the the previous 2 or 3 decades.  At least that's the trend I've observed (from a distance it must be noted) in traditional Catholic groups, but also in some Novus Ordo dioceses, especially my own, of Spokane, WA.  None the less, though it is a modern (though I wouldn't think "Modernist") view, we shouldn't discount the value of "second career" vocations, because the Church needs good priests and professed religious!

In the "old days", I'm guessing late vocations were perhaps often turned away.  I'm sure there was the thought that "If you didn't properly discern your vocation back when you should have (i.e., parochial grade school), what should make us think you are properly discerning it now?"  And, back then when the seminary and convent pipelines were largely "full", I'm guessing there was the pragmatic thought that it made more sense to take a teen or 20'something, rather than someone in their 30's or 40's, because the "system" would get more bang for the formation expense buck from the younger candidate.

That being said, there are examples of authentic "late vocations" in tradition.  St. Francis Xavier Cabrini and St. Elizabeth Ann Seton come to mind, I'm sure there are others.

(05-28-2009, 01:41 PM)StrictCatholicGirl Wrote:
(05-28-2009, 01:30 PM)glgas Wrote: It is bad news because if they start later they serve less time.

No, because we're all living longer these days.

Quote: Also the majority of the men are taken by women before their year 30, and there is a well founded concern that many of the non taken are homosexuals.

No, again, because most people are waiting longer to marry these days, too. 

- Lisa

Edited for spelling
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#25
(05-28-2009, 01:04 PM)StrictCatholicGirl Wrote:
(05-27-2009, 04:51 PM)glgas Wrote: Here is the USCCB analysis of the 2009 ordinations countrywide. The good new is, that the percentage of the American born priest is increasing, not so good news is that the average age is still over 35

That's not necessarily bad news to me. How long does preparing for the priesthood take these days? Ideally, 6 years? So if a young man enters the seminary at 30 he'll be ordained around age 36. I certainly don't believe the process should delayed or prolonged, but with a longer period of discernment it makes for more dedicated priests with true vocations. That's my opinion, of course. 

- Lisa

Six years if you already have a Bachelor's Degree.  They require two years of Philosophy and Theology 'remedial' classes, before you enter Major Seminary (which is four years).  If you don't have a Bachelor's Degree, then you need to get one in Philosophy or Theology (so then you're looking at 8 years of school).

The Church requires more than it did in the past, and with few high school seminaries, the process starts later.  You're going to have older priests even if they start young.
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