Tuesday, 28 May 2013

Who are Our Priests of the Future in A&B

Men prostrate during ordination rite
The number of men entering seminaries across England and Wales has increased over recent years, as indeed has the number of men and women entering religious life. The new diocesan seminary students for the two countries increased from 21 in 2001 to 44 in 2010. There were 20 priestly ordinations in 2011, 31 in 2012 and the projected number for 2013 is 41.

What is the story in our own diocese of Arundel & Brighton?

Fr Terry Martin, Diocesan Vocation Director, told us about our current students: Due to be ordained to the priesthood in July, soon after his 34th birthday, is Deacon Simon Dray. Robin Farrow, a former Anglican clergyman, is undertaking a special course at St John’s Seminary, Wonersh for those who already have experience in ministry. Hopefully he will soon be ordained deacon and, subsequently, priest.

Some men begin their formation at the Royal English College in Valladolid and in September Alex Smith and Tom Kent will be our students there. Tom, age 19, comes from Wadhurst parish and Alex, age 23, is one of two students from St Joseph’s parish, Brighton. The other, Joe Cook, age 25, is preparing to go to St John’s, Wonersh.

In the Venerable English College, Rome, we have Tristan Cranfield who, it is hoped, will be ordained in about five years time.

Selection for entrance to the seminary is a prayerful process of discernment and reflection, with ongoing discernment continuing throughout the whole six years of formation at seminary.

This may sound a daunting prospect, but it ensures that, when ordained, these men will be confident of their vocation and willing to give good service to the Church. We need to pray for them often.

If you are thinking about a priestly vocation, there are various opportunities to enquire further by contacting Fr Terry Martin on 01293 524329 (mob 07545 576627) or terry.martin@dabnet.org

No comments:

Post a Comment