When the person praying for a job is clergy

Here’s an unusual look at an often-unreported aspect of the recession: ministers who are unemployed. From the Columbus Dispatch: When ordained minister Rudy Alexeeff talks about his job search, it’s clear he’s looking for more than just a paycheck. He and his wife, Maggie, could definitely use more money, but he wants to find exactly [Read More…]

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From city official to Sister of St. Joseph

This is certainly a different kind of vocation story: A former Portland City official took perpetual vows in November as a Sister of St. Joseph of Peace. Sister Susan Francois, who reclaimed her faith during the late 1990s at St. Philip Neri Parish in Portland, was also a leading Catholic peace activist in Oregon during [Read More…]

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“How beautiful, the hands that serve”: a moving ordination slideshow

A couple weeks back, I posted on the diaconal ordination of Sean Suckiel.  Below is a lovingly produced slideshow of the event, which also includes his profession of faith and Deacon Sean’s first vespers/Benediction. [Read more…]

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The Catholic priest with 9 children

Last spring, I posted an item about an Anglican priest’s leap of faith — joining the Catholic Church and having no job prospects.  A UK paper this weekend has an update: Father Ian Hellyer is a Roman Catholic priest – but far from being celibate, he’s a father. Not just to a couple of children, [Read More…]

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Worth a thousand words

In 2002, when I was beginning formation for the diaconate, a young teenager by the name of Sean Suckiel worked at night answering phones in the rectory of my spiritual director.  I used to see Sean a lot.  He told once me that the one thing he had wanted, his whole life, was to be [Read More…]

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Little drummer priest

A priest reader sent this my way: a video from his ordination reception last June, featuring a priest friend whose talents obviously extend beyond pounding the pulpit.  Way to go, daddy-o!   [Read more…]

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Any suggestions for a teenager thinking of the priesthood?

A woman in my parish dropped me a line today: I’d like your advice. The other day a young man, still a boy, told me he was thinking about becoming a priest.  I was very touched by the fact that he shared this with me. I’ll pray that God guides him until he reaches a [Read More…]

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The end of an era

As is the custom in the Dioceses of Brooklyn and Rockville Centre, they ordained transitional deacons today, the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, at the 80-year-old facility shared by the two dioceses, the Seminary of the Immaculate Conception in Huntington, New York.  The occasion was beautiful but bittersweet:  this will likely be the last ordination [Read More…]

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Answering the call: meet a seminarian…and his wife

Here’s something we don’t encounter very often: a story about seminarians preparing to get married.  They are Greek Catholic, in Ukraine, and the story comes from the pages of the current issue of ONE magazine: In the Greek Catholic tradition, seminarians are permitted to marry prior to ordination. But some still choose a life of [Read More…]

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Boom: seminary enrollment up around the country

And Catholic News Service has the numbers, and details: In his first months as rector of Theological College in Washington, Father Phillip J. Brown has been confronting a problem that the national diocesan seminary for the U.S. Catholic Church “has not had for a long time” — it is bursting at the seams. Enrollment is [Read More…]

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