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 Official Newspaper of the Catholic Diocese of Green Bay, WisconsinMarch 10, 2006 Issue 

Young men invite God to help them discern

Every month, a group gathers for prayer and to talk about the possibility of priesthood

Sixth in a series on the Bishop's Appeal


By Fr. Tom Long
Director of Vocations

photo of members of Catholic Men's Discernment Group discussing vocations to the priesthood with Bp. David Zubik
DISCERNING GROUP: Some members of the Catholic Men's Discernment Group, which meets monthly at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, discuss vocations to the priesthood with Bp. David Zubik at their March meeting. (Rick Evans photo)

"Bishop had a beginning like any of us."

That realization, spoken by a man applying to become a seminarian for the Diocese of Green Bay, summarized the feeling of all 10 young men who gathered recently to talk with Bp. David Zubik about the priestly vocation.

The Catholic Men's Discernment Group meets the first Friday evening of each month at the Ecumenical Center at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay. Bp. Zubik visited the group March 3 to share his wisdom and answer some questions from the men who are seeking God's direction in their lives.

About
priesthood

For more information on vocations to priesthood, phone Fr. Tom Long at (920)272-8293 or toll-free, 1-877-500-3580, ext. 8293; e-mail [email protected]. There is also more information on the diocesan website, www.gbdioc.org.

Bp. Zubik told his own vocation story and how he trusted God with his future. Despite considering various options as a young man, Bp. Zubik said he knew he needed to give God a chance. So he entered seminary to further discern the direction to which God was calling him.

Sharing Our Faith: 2006 Bishop's Appeal logo

Bishop's Appeal

What: Bishop's Appeal, the Green Bay Diocese's annual fund-raiser to support diocesan programs and services offered to parishes and individuals.

Where: All parishes in the diocese.

When: Right now.

How: Making a cash, check, credit card (MasterCard, Visa and Discover) or pledge donation. Materials have been sent to homes and also are available through parishes. Some employers offer matching gift programs, for which Catholic Charities may qualify, since it serves the general public; additional information is available through Human Resources departments.

Theme: Sharing Our Faith.

Target: $5 million.

More information:
Contact Josh Diedrich at:

Phone: (920) 272-8197 or
           1-877-500-3580, ext. 8197

Address: P.O. Box 23825
              Green Bay WI 54305-3825

E-mail: [email protected]

Web: www.gbdioc.org

Related Compass articles

Often, the decision to enter the seminary is a difficult one for young men because they feel they have to be certain about priesthood to begin studies. That is not the case, however. The first two years of seminary are meant to help men pray and reflect on whether that call is indeed for them.

Bp. Zubik's experience of not being certain of his call until after he entered seminary helped the men to verify that they too can continue to pray about their life's direction even after deciding to enter seminary.

The men in the discernment group range in age from a high school senior to a 45-year-old law school graduate. Their monthly gatherings include Mass, supper, discussion on an issue related to discernment of a vocation, and quiet prayer.

One 29 year-old participant said it is "helpful to get together with other guys who recognize similar stirrings in their lives. They have the same thoughts and feelings as you, and so you feel a sense of solidarity with them. It helps you to be open to conversion in your life."

One 18-year-old student asked Bp. Zubik what his advice would be for young Catholic leaders. Bp. Zubik said his advice is the same as that of the late Pope John Paul II: "Be not afraid." Young people need to be able to stand up for their faith and witness to its value and many of today's young people have the courage to do just that, he said.

The Vocations Department of the Diocese of Green Bay sponsors the monthly gathering in hope that the young men, in coming to know one another, can become a means of prayer and support for one another as they sort through the call of God in their lives. The group will gather a second time this month - on March 25 - for "Thinking of Priesthood Day," a day of learning and praying about the priestly vocation.

Vocations is part of the Ministries' Services Department of the Green Bay Diocese, which includes departments of Lay Ministry, Diaconate, Representative for Religious, Safe Environment, and the Vicar for Ministers. The Ministries' Services Department is funded in part through the Bishop's Appeal.


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