Each of us is called by God to a life of holiness. Our vocation is the way we live out that call. It’s up to each person to discern through prayer, discussion, reading of Scripture, formation and even spiritual direction where God is calling him/her and to respond generously to his call. Some are called to marriage, others to consecrated or religious life, and still others to holy orders which includes deacons and priests.
The Diocese of Grand Rapids is blessed with 133 priests, 16 priests from religious communities, and 11 priests from other dioceses, along with 40 deacons, 25 seminarians, and women religious from 10 orders.
Over the past six years the number of seminarians in formation for our diocese has continued to grow, what a blessing!
These are the men who, when ordained, will lead, teach and care for the faithful. They are present during many significant moments of our lives, celebrating the holy sacrifice of the Mass, witnessing the sacrament of holy matrimony, baptizing our children, and burying our loved ones.
Our college level seminarians study at St. John Vianney College Seminary at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota and our graduate level seminarians study at the University of St. Mary of the Lake/Mundelein Seminary just outside Chicago, Illinois.
In June 2017, our diaconate program was restored. Permanent deacons serve the ministry of the word, the altar and charity in our parishes.
We are grateful for those who have listened for God’s call and responded.
This process can take months or even years. The Office of Vocations is here to assist you in answering that call with discernment opportunities, encouragement, support, education, and resources. If you believe you are being called to priesthood or religious life, please invest the time to discern what God is asking of you.