December 13, 2015

A Vocations Boom?

From Catholic Sacristan comes this:

H/T Fr. Z

Vocations to the priesthood blossomed significantly under Pope Benedict. One might argue that the continuing bump in vocations is due to Papa-emeritus Benedict's continuing influence, i.e., his call to dignity and to celebrate the Mass according to the mind of Holy Mother Church.

Our beloved emeritus pope embodied the very dignity which has invited men of integrity to enter the priesthood. Papa Benedict presented clearly the dignity of the Holy Eucharist, the Mass. When the Mass is given its due respect, vocations increase. The priest who honours the Sacred Liturgy by embodying, for example, the liturgical norms delineated in Sacrosanctum Concilium (especially SC22), is a vessel through whom God can draw and inspire others to serve Holy Mother Church. Unfortunately, far too many priests are so woefully ignorant of the Church's documents on the Sacred Liturgy that they are ill-equipped to form others in the authentic spirituality of the Mass.

Observation

     Where the Benedictine ethos has permeated diocesan cultures, vocations to the priesthood continue to thrive.

A foundation for the prediction:

An Easter Blessing: Madison experiences surge in men studying for priesthood
Madison (WKOW) — For the Catholic Diocese of Madison, a new wave of those studying for priesthood is an Easter blessing.
For the first time in forty years, more than thirty men are involved in seminary training. On top of that, six others are being ordained this June.
The bulk of these priesthood pupils are in their early to mid 20’s, but a new and growing trend of older men are also working to join the fold.
Monsignor James Bartylla says these individuals are in their 50’s. He says because they’re a bit older, the Diocese takes a different approach with them. Monsignor Bartylla says these individuals perceive the holy work as a second career. 
[ ... ]

Fr. Z notes in a preamble to an April 2015 blog article:
This is a great story on the vocations situation in the Diocese of Madison, where the Extraordinary Ordinary, His Excellency Most Reverend Robert C. Morlino is the diocesan bishop.
There is a strong connection between the bishop and number of vocations. No question.
Go there to read more.

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