to bring news on Vocations, via CNS NewsHub:
First, the reports of the efforts of the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph, and their recent upswing in numbers of seminarians:
Money and effort alone can't effect vocations to the priesthood, Jiron explained, "God calls men interiorly." But in 15 years of working in vocation discernment, including some time in the seminary himself, Jiron said, "Every single vocation I know of has always been invited - by a priest, religious or other lay person ... so God's call also speaks through others."
A Vocation Group in Los Angeles helps men discern the call to the priesthood:
"We started interviewing priests and seminarians," explained Tirone, "asking them, 'What were the key aspects that you did during your pre-seminary days that either moved you closer to the seminary or took you away from it?' And we basically came up with five phases in the vocational journey process: 'Serving Others,' 'Vocation Thoughts,' 'Informal Inquiry,' 'Spiritual Formation' and 'Formal Discernment.'
"The vocational journey starts with a passion to serve. So, if somebody is open to whatever God wants in his life, [they're welcome] to come to the group," said Tirone, who added that people in Phase One usually never thought about the priesthood but typically enjoy serving others.
Finally, words of wisdom from Cardinal McCarrick: "Happy priests attract men to want to be priests":
“I think every priest should stand outside church after Mass, even when it’s cold,” Cardinal McCarrick said. “Maybe not when it rains,” he added, drawing laughter from the audience.A priest once came to him, Cardinal McCarrick said, who was distressed that few people came to see him during the week, even though the priest always made himself available. The priest was skeptical when Cardinal McCarrick suggested standing outside to greet parishioners after Mass.“I‘ll make you a bet,” Cardinal McCarrick said, that if the priest stood outside church after Mass, he would soon find that people had no trouble going to talk with him during the week.
A swing of the Thurible to Rich for pointing me in the right direction.