Running out of priests and other Church issues Apr 4, 2008 12:35:21 GMT 1
Post by Bonobo on Apr 4, 2008 12:35:21 GMT 1
I mean a shortage of priests in general. There are some priests who come from other countries to minister to the growing immigrant communities (i.e. Hispanic, Asian, etc), but for the most part there is a serious shortage of priests. In my area of the country many parishes have had to merge/consolidate with others or be closed for lack of priests. Not so many years ago each town had at least one Catholic Church, cities had many, and most parishes were served by more than one priest. Now many churches have to share priests. In my town, our country parish always had it's own priest, but last year, due to shortage, we have merged with a large parish in the small city next to us. There are two priests there, with two retired priests that help out. The church in our town is no longer a separate parish, but a 'worship site' of the larger parish.
The problem seems to come from secular society not valuing the spiritual life and young men who may have a vocation opting not to pursue that way of life either from lack of encouragement or from the lure of materialism.
The church has undertaken an effort to emphasize the positive side of the priesthood in hopes of encouraging young men to look into the possibility. Many later-life vocations are happening (older men;including some widowed). And a positive side effect is that the men who are in the seminaries now are of the highest quality, so that bodes well for the future.
Hmm, I wonder whether you take into account the influence of celibacy. In my opinion it s a major obstacle to more vocations.
If priests could marry, I would have become one long ago. hahahaha I have always dreamt of giving a service!
We'll take any Polish priests you want to send our way!
There are still many in Poland but the influx of young men into seminars is decreasing. In 10, 15 years we will be coping with the shortage of priests ourselves.