The Joy of the Priesthood
Identifying and cultivating candidates for the priesthood
Thirty-fifth Easter Seminar for Priests and Seminarians

WHEN Sunday, April 1 to Wednesday, April 4, 2018

WHERE Shellbourne Conference Center  |  Valparaiso, Indiana

“Ecclesial vocations are manifestations of the immeasur­able riches of Christ.” (cf. Eph 3:8). Identifying and nurturing priestly vocations according to the needs of contemporary culture includes one of the chief concerns of Pope Francis. Today’s priest must not only be able to explain the teachings of the Church in a persuasive way but also give a convincing witness of the merciful heart of Jesus Christ. The recurring message of the Holy Father and his immediate predecessors is that the priest must be an expert in humanity. Under the broad scope of holiness, the priest must be grounded in deep prayer centered on the word of God and the Holy Eucharist.

His pastoral charity expressed in joy, affection and spirit of service must be an overflow of his spiritual life. Pope Francis repeats often in his addresses to priests and seminarians the need to go beyond a strictly academic or functional approach to pastoral ministry and actually move the hearts of his people.

The Holy Father speaks about the evangelization of attraction and accompaniment. This kind of ability certainly requires a strong foundation not only in the spiritual life but priestly virtues that can inspire young men to consider the priesthood.

No priest should feel exempt from this lofty task of both identifying and nurturing priestly vocations.

With these ideas in mind, the seminar will provide guidance and orientation to meet the challenge of cultivating possible candidates to the seminary. The speakers for this seminar have had very positive experiences in both attracting and fostering a priestly vocations. We certainly welcome their insights and recommendations.

“Ecclesial vocations are manifestations of the immeasur­able riches of Christ (cf. Eph 3:8). For this reason they are to be held in the highest esteem and cultivated with all diligence and concern, so that they can blossom and mature.

Among the many vocations that the Holy Spirit never ceases to call forth in the People of God, the vocation to the ministerial priesthood calls one to “participate in the hierarchical priesthood of Christ” and to be united with Him “to feed the Church in Christ’s name with the word and the grace of God’’.

This vocation arises in various circumstances and at different stages of human life: in adolescence, in adulthood, and, as the constant experience of the Church never fails to show, also in childhood.”

Ratio Fundamentalis Institutionis Sacerdotalis,
“The Gift of the Priestly Vocation”, no. 11
(Congregation of the Clergy, December 8, 2016)

Topics and Speakers

Easter Sunday, April 1

7:30 p.m.

Arrival and Light Supper


8:00 p.m.

Introductory Talk


Monday, April 2

7:45 a.m.

Morning Prayer


8:00 a.m.

Preached Meditation


8:30 a.m.

Eucharistic Concelebration
(Please bring alb and stole)


11:00 a.m.

First Presentation
The Gift of the Priestly Vocation
Most Rev. Thomas J. Paprocki
Bishop of Diocese of Springfield, IL


5:30 p.m.

Holy Hour


7:30 p.m.

Second Presentation
The Christian Home as Seedbed for Vocations
Sheila Liaugminas
Relevant Radio Talk Show Host & Writer
Mother of a Priest

Tuesday, April 3

7:45 a.m.

Morning Prayer


8:00 a.m.

Preached Conference


8:30 a.m.

Eucharistic Concelebration
(Please bring alb and stole)


11:00 a.m.

Third Presentation
Discovering Divine Vocations for the Priesthood
Rev. Burke Masters
Vocations Director for Diocese of Joliet, IL


5:30 p.m.

Holy Hour


7:30 p.m.

Fourth Presentation
Developing an Effective Priestly Soul
Rev. Eric Nielsen
Diocese of Madison, WI
Pastor of St. Paul University Parish
(University of Wisconsin)


Wednesday, April 4

7:45 a.m.

Morning Prayer


8:00 a.m.

Conference


8:30 a.m.

Eucharistic Concelebration
(Please bring alb and stole)


10:00 a.m.

Departure

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