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Hello Father,

I have been in a diocesan seminary for some years, but I am doubtful over my calling to priesthood and if being a diocesan priest in the future corresponds to my charism.

Please pray for me.

A thousand times thanks.

Answer from the priest,

Dear friend, 

1. the first condition for discerning without veils over the eyes is to live in the grace of God and chastely.

Otherwise the passions do their part by clouding.

2. The second condition is to intensify prayer.

Jesus in the garden of olives, “having entered the struggle, prayed more intensely” (Lk 22:44).

So we must learn to do it when the struggle (in your case for discernment) becomes more bitter, too.

God’s works are all born from deep prayer.

3. This should not be a moment of desertion for you, but of enlightenment to be able to do what is most pleasing to God

4. Therefore determine to live also through a certain quantification of your prayer.

When love for the Lord becomes more ardent “it causes the illumination of the heart” (causat cordis illuminationem), so says St. Thomas.

5. If the one who discerned your call to the priesthood was certain with you of the call to the priesthood, do not call everything into question, because “the gifts and the call of God are irrevocable!” (Rom 11,19).

Rather, revive your call by being further close to the Lord (Mk 3:14).

If, on the other hand, you had entered with doubt, you must come out of it, listening to your educators and above all your confessor. You cannot reach the eve of sacred orders still in doubt.

6. If, on the other hand, it is a question of verifying the charism, keep in mind that it must correspond to the inclinations of your person. Because the vocation (ex parte subiecti) starts from here.

This is why Father Sertillanges said that “a vocation is what everyone is”.

It is necessary to feel made for a certain path.

7. It may happen that one feels made in different ways, as it happened for me: both for marriage and for consecrated life.

In this case, my opinion would be to take one’s self and to give it all to Christ.

I did so, and from that moment on I found great peace.

I know I gave my life to Christ.

Do it too.

With the hope that you will do the same thing, too I remember you with particular devotion in prayer and I bless you.

Father Angelo