Kevin W. Vann J.D.C., D.D Bishop of Orange If you have ever thought about becoming a Catholic Priest, or wanted to know more about the priesthood, this film is for you. You do not need to be 100% certain about your vocation to enter the seminary or novitiate. If I was turned down for seminary due to my health, but my health is better now, do I have a chance to join? If the latter, he must be married before being ordained a deacon. This is not uncommon, but you may wish to talk with mentors in your church about the possible vocation. The Catholic Church doesn't recognize divorce. God chose quite a few of the most atypical people to be his prophets. If you feel God's calling and believe that a life of celibacy and devotion to God is for you, this may be the path you are meant to make. Talk to a current or former pastor to help you get started. For advice about becoming a priest later in life, keep reading. There are 14 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. George Martell/The Pilot Media Group | Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Boston | Flickr CC BY-ND 2.0, .css-tadcwa:hover{-webkit-text-decoration:underline;text-decoration:underline;}Philip Kosloski - @media screen and (max-width:767px){.css-ij9gf6 .date-separator{display:none;}.css-ij9gf6 .date-updated{display:block;width:100%;}}published on 09/12/20. We know ads can be annoying, but they’re what allow us to make all of wikiHow available for free. The death of Christ put an end to the Old Covenant and the Levitical priesthood, as evidenced by the rending of the temple veil (Matthew 27:51). The ages for being ordained is between 25 and 55. The chief priests Caiaphas and Annas were instrumental in having Jesus crucified (John 18:13). It would be best if you were unmarried. Religious priests join the global community of a religious order or congregation, such as the Benedictines or Franciscans. In addition to altar services, help out with singing and reading. A Protestant has the experience of a minister smiling whenever he sees you, memorizing your name, and generally going out of his way to make a personal connection. These priests make formal vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience, with some variation among different orders. The Catholic Church is a global institution with many traditions. This article has been viewed 758,425 times. Both permanent and transitional deacons perform the same duties in the church. Either way, discernment normally spans years, though there are rare occurrences when an authentic calling is received in a shorter amount of time. A Catholic catechumen is a person who not baptized but is learning Catholic beliefs and practices to become Catholic and who will become a full member of the Church through the Sacraments of Initiation, namely baptism, confirmation and eucharist. There are many historical and theological reasons for this, but it is considered the last and final stage of discernment. Sylvester Asoya Reverend Father Paul Obodoechine Emechete is West Africa’s first indigenous Catholic priest. Jared Johnson and Fr. It takes many years of study and a lot of money to educate a Priest. Any field of study is acceptable. You must be an average or above average student, according to the Albany diocese, as you will need to pass more complicated courses in the seminary. We use cookies to make wikiHow great. So you can study whatever interests you in college. It's best to speak to a local priest to find out more about this process in your region. The average amount of time for seminary formation is 5-8 years, with some religious orders requiring up to 12 years of formation. If you're interested in becoming a catholic priest, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. Morrison and his friends are Catholic seminarians, studying to become priests. This article has been viewed 758,425 times. Inquiry Stage. If this is what you want to do, and feel God calling you to the priesthood, you will find your way. For example, teaching, providing emotional and spiritual guidance, or contributing to your community can all help prepare you. Include your email address to get a message when this question is answered. After contacting them, there will usually be a vetting period, during which the vocation will be tested to see if it could be from God, or is simply a human desire. Meet the basic requirements. If you qualify, go to college to earn a bachelor's degree and get involved with your parish, volunteering at church whenever possible. You will also be attending retreats, conferences, and workshops as regular aspects of your training. I am 15 years old and I want to become a priest later in life, but can i still become priest if I become Catholic now? As you can imagine, these numbers represent a lot of work. "Discernment" is the life-long process of figuring out God's will through prayer and spiritual direction. Read more:What is a seminary and who goes there? But it's not a requirement that you have one. It is possible for a transitional deacon to discover he is not called by God to become a priest. You must be at least 25 years old to become a priest, but this is rarely an issue unless you complete your studies unusually early. Also, keep in mind, the priesthood isn’t like a career choice. A theology degree is a good thing to get if you're thinking about going into seminary. Basic Requirements to Becoming a Catholic Priest You must be a male. Catholic priests are trained in the seminary. So no, if this is what you want to do, you will find your way! Becoming a Catholic priest is a serious decision. You may enter seminary without a bachelor's degree, but it will be more difficult to get in, and the length of your education will typically increase to eight years. Please help us continue to provide you with our trusted how-to guides and videos for free by whitelisting wikiHow on your ad blocker. Some Eastern Catholic Churches have different regulations and ordain married men, and (rarely) a married man ordained in another Christian community may convert and become a Catholic priest. The priesthood is not a job, which is why so much emphasis is placed on God’s will, not our own. To create this article, 87 people, some anonymous, worked to edit and improve it over time. Everyone has a universal call to be holy, but each person in a different way--vocations include religious life, priesthood, single life, and marriage. He will meet with you and give you more information about the steps you are about to take. You'll be guided on meditation and solitude and be given adequate time to hone your public speaking skills. Getting a bachelor's degree will make you more likely to get accepted into seminary and will reduce the number of years you spend studying there. Aside being regarded as a […] The vocation to the priesthood is nearly always specific, being called to serve in a particular diocese, or in a specific religious order. Of course, you just need to go through training for the priesthood. If you really can’t stand to see another ad again, then please consider supporting our work with a contribution to wikiHow. Support Aleteia with as little as $1. The terms "vocation" and "discernment" may come in handy: A "vocation," according to the Church, is a calling. This is the most pivotal stage of discernment, as only one third of all seminarians are eventually ordained a priest. Again, an individual could back out at the last minute, but once they are ordained, they are a “priest forever.” There are occasions where a priest may be removed from active ministry, but at a spiritual level, the sacramental character of Holy Orders, like that of Baptism, is indelible. Getting thorough knowledge of the books and hymnal will make everything much easier down the road. Transitional deacons are seminary students in the process of becoming ordained priests. Yes, you should apply again with proof that your health has improved. Becoming Catholic Maybe you’ve attended Mass with us for a while, or maybe you’ve just met a Catholic and you were intrigued by her faith. {"smallUrl":"https:\/\/www.wikihow.com\/images\/thumb\/c\/c4\/Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-1-Version-2.jpg\/v4-460px-Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-1-Version-2.jpg","bigUrl":"\/images\/thumb\/c\/c4\/Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-1-Version-2.jpg\/aid14393-v4-728px-Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-1-Version-2.jpg","smallWidth":460,"smallHeight":345,"bigWidth":728,"bigHeight":546,"licensing":"

License: Creative Commons<\/a>
\n<\/p>


\n<\/p><\/div>"}, {"smallUrl":"https:\/\/www.wikihow.com\/images\/thumb\/a\/ac\/Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-2-Version-2.jpg\/v4-460px-Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-2-Version-2.jpg","bigUrl":"\/images\/thumb\/a\/ac\/Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-2-Version-2.jpg\/aid14393-v4-728px-Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-2-Version-2.jpg","smallWidth":460,"smallHeight":345,"bigWidth":728,"bigHeight":546,"licensing":"

License: Creative Commons<\/a>
\n<\/p>


\n<\/p><\/div>"}, {"smallUrl":"https:\/\/www.wikihow.com\/images\/thumb\/b\/b7\/Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-3-Version-2.jpg\/v4-460px-Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-3-Version-2.jpg","bigUrl":"\/images\/thumb\/b\/b7\/Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-3-Version-2.jpg\/aid14393-v4-728px-Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-3-Version-2.jpg","smallWidth":460,"smallHeight":345,"bigWidth":728,"bigHeight":546,"licensing":"

License: Creative Commons<\/a>
\n<\/p>


\n<\/p><\/div>"}, {"smallUrl":"https:\/\/www.wikihow.com\/images\/thumb\/a\/a3\/Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-4-Version-2.jpg\/v4-460px-Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-4-Version-2.jpg","bigUrl":"\/images\/thumb\/a\/a3\/Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-4-Version-2.jpg\/aid14393-v4-728px-Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-4-Version-2.jpg","smallWidth":460,"smallHeight":345,"bigWidth":728,"bigHeight":546,"licensing":"

License: Creative Commons<\/a>
\n<\/p>


\n<\/p><\/div>"}, {"smallUrl":"https:\/\/www.wikihow.com\/images\/thumb\/9\/95\/Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-5-Version-2.jpg\/v4-460px-Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-5-Version-2.jpg","bigUrl":"\/images\/thumb\/9\/95\/Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-5-Version-2.jpg\/aid14393-v4-728px-Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-5-Version-2.jpg","smallWidth":460,"smallHeight":345,"bigWidth":728,"bigHeight":546,"licensing":"

License: Creative Commons<\/a>
\n<\/p>


\n<\/p><\/div>"}, {"smallUrl":"https:\/\/www.wikihow.com\/images\/thumb\/5\/54\/Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-6-Version-2.jpg\/v4-460px-Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-6-Version-2.jpg","bigUrl":"\/images\/thumb\/5\/54\/Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-6-Version-2.jpg\/aid14393-v4-728px-Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-6-Version-2.jpg","smallWidth":460,"smallHeight":345,"bigWidth":728,"bigHeight":546,"licensing":"

License: Creative Commons<\/a>
\n<\/p>


\n<\/p><\/div>"}, {"smallUrl":"https:\/\/www.wikihow.com\/images\/thumb\/2\/2e\/Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-7-Version-2.jpg\/v4-460px-Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-7-Version-2.jpg","bigUrl":"\/images\/thumb\/2\/2e\/Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-7-Version-2.jpg\/aid14393-v4-728px-Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-7-Version-2.jpg","smallWidth":460,"smallHeight":345,"bigWidth":728,"bigHeight":546,"licensing":"

License: Creative Commons<\/a>
\n<\/p>


\n<\/p><\/div>"}, {"smallUrl":"https:\/\/www.wikihow.com\/images\/thumb\/a\/a2\/Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-8-Version-2.jpg\/v4-460px-Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-8-Version-2.jpg","bigUrl":"\/images\/thumb\/a\/a2\/Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-8-Version-2.jpg\/aid14393-v4-728px-Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-8-Version-2.jpg","smallWidth":460,"smallHeight":345,"bigWidth":728,"bigHeight":546,"licensing":"

License: Creative Commons<\/a>
\n<\/p>


\n<\/p><\/div>"}, {"smallUrl":"https:\/\/www.wikihow.com\/images\/thumb\/c\/c8\/Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-9-Version-2.jpg\/v4-460px-Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-9-Version-2.jpg","bigUrl":"\/images\/thumb\/c\/c8\/Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-9-Version-2.jpg\/aid14393-v4-728px-Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-9-Version-2.jpg","smallWidth":460,"smallHeight":345,"bigWidth":728,"bigHeight":546,"licensing":"

License: Creative Commons<\/a>
\n<\/p>


\n<\/p><\/div>"}, {"smallUrl":"https:\/\/www.wikihow.com\/images\/thumb\/3\/38\/Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-10-Version-2.jpg\/v4-460px-Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-10-Version-2.jpg","bigUrl":"\/images\/thumb\/3\/38\/Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-10-Version-2.jpg\/aid14393-v4-728px-Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-10-Version-2.jpg","smallWidth":460,"smallHeight":345,"bigWidth":728,"bigHeight":546,"licensing":"

License: Creative Commons<\/a>
\n<\/p>


\n<\/p><\/div>"}, {"smallUrl":"https:\/\/www.wikihow.com\/images\/thumb\/b\/be\/Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-11.jpg\/v4-460px-Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-11.jpg","bigUrl":"\/images\/thumb\/b\/be\/Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-11.jpg\/aid14393-v4-728px-Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-11.jpg","smallWidth":460,"smallHeight":345,"bigWidth":728,"bigHeight":546,"licensing":"

License: Creative Commons<\/a>
\n<\/p>


\n<\/p><\/div>"}, {"smallUrl":"https:\/\/www.wikihow.com\/images\/thumb\/0\/0c\/Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-12.jpg\/v4-460px-Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-12.jpg","bigUrl":"\/images\/thumb\/0\/0c\/Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-12.jpg\/aid14393-v4-728px-Become-a-Catholic-Priest-Step-12.jpg","smallWidth":460,"smallHeight":345,"bigWidth":728,"bigHeight":546,"licensing":"

License: Creative Commons<\/a>
\n<\/p>


\n<\/p><\/div>"}. (One good example is Fr. You need to have a bachelor's degree in what subject before you can enter the seminary? Guess again! You may need reference letters, proof of church involvement, a certain GPA, and a statement of interest, to name the basics. However this is a very rare exception, and normally a married man would not be allowed as a candidate for the priesthood. For … Click on another answer to find the right one... For advice about becoming a priest later in life, keep reading. However, you don't need a philosophy degree in order to be accepted into a seminary. Pick another answer! Read more:What Is the Difference Between a Friar, a Monk and a Priest? If his wife dies before him, he may be ordained a … ‌While Pope Francis has opened up more discussion about women’s roles and appointed women in key Vatican positions, the topic of them becoming priests is … The response depends on seminary policy and your financial situation. We need you. You must be at least 25 years old to become a priest, but this is rarely an issue unless you complete your studies unusually early. By signing up you are agreeing to receive emails according to our privacy policy. Most discover God is not calling them to the priesthood. You don't have to be fluent (although it helps) but knowing the basics is a must, but not much more than what would be said in mass and morning prayer along with other services. Typically men are ordained as transitional deacons for a full year before their ordination to the priesthood. In the Roman Catholic Church, a priest must be male and unmarried. So it usually is an a problem for a person to become a Priest at 25 and the cut off is 55 because of the time and investment it takes to become a Priest. To create this article, 87 people, some anonymous, worked to edit and improve it over time. If you're a widower, you can become a priest as long as a few years have passed since your wife's death. Yes. Can someone be both a priest and a military soldier? Correct! A philosophy degree is a good way to prepare yourself for what you'll study in seminary. The Catechism of the Catholic Church explains, “Through the sacrament of Holy Orders priests share in the universal dimensions of the mission that Christ entrusted to the apostles. However, it's not required that you attend college in order to become a priest. Correspondence concerning the Pastoral Provision can be addressed to: Most Rev. 20 million users around the world read Aleteia.org every month, Aleteia is published every day in eight languages: English, French, Arabic, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, and Slovenian, Each month, readers view more than 50 million pages, Nearly 4 million people follow Aleteia on social media, Each month, we publish 2,450 articles and around 40 videos, We have 60 full time staff and approximately 400 collaborators (writers, translators, photographers, etc. You can start with one or the other, but you will need to have completed sufficient instruction AND be attending regular services before you can become a full member of the Catholic faith. unmarried), this practice is a long-held discipline of the Church. Divorcées must apply for annulment. Many Eastern Catholic Churches will ordain married men. As a chaplain yes, but keep in mind, you will be unarmed and usually not on the front lines. Preparation for reception into the Church begins with the inquiry stage, in which the unbaptized person begins to learn about the Catholic faith and decide whether to embrace it.The first formal step to Catholicism begins with the rite of reception into the order of catechumens, in which the unbaptized express their desire and intention to become Christians. Before you can become a Catholic priest, make sure you meet the basic requirements. I've heard the average age now for ordination in America is 35. Applying to become a Catholic priest is not like applying for a secular job or profession, but involves you and the Church, particularly your bishop, discerning whether or not God is calling you to serve His Church as a priest in a lifetime commitment. Use this time to attend retreats, help other students, and connect with your new parish or diocese. Widowers are accepted, but typically not within a year or two of the spouse's death. You might want to become a priest, but you might not actually be called to be a priest. There are actually a few married priests, who were formerly Episcopalian ministers who converted to Catholicism. Discernment takes a lot of patience. This includes parish priests, chaplains, and religious teachers, among others. Get to know your favorite priest. Every school has a different application process. By using our site, you agree to our. A priest is a religious leader authorized to perform the sacred rituals of a religion, especially as a mediatory agent between humans and one or more deities. Even with the establishment of the Ordinariate of the Chair of St. Peter, the Pastoral Provision remains available for individuals and married former Episcopalian priests to become Catholic priests in a diocese. The questions may cover physical health, emotional well being, conformity of behavior with Catholic tradition, and broad knowledge of Church doctrine. Diocesan priests serve the Church in a geographic area. Read on for another quiz question. If you’re reading this article, it’s thanks to the generosity of people like you, who have made Aleteia possible. God chooses the most atypical people to be his prophets. You must be a Roman Catholic. Before being ordained a priest, a man must first be ordained a transitional deacon. Do I have to be a holy man before I can think of priesthood?

Is recommended to attend college in order to be a priest be 100 % certain about your vocation enter... A very rare exception, and broad knowledge of the books and hymnal will make everything much easier down road. ’ mission of evangelization, bringing the Gospel to all people to create this article, 87,! Know Latin to be his prophets a page that has been read 758,425 times for more about! Questions may cover physical health, emotional well being, conformity of behavior with tradition. Relatively speaking, they are more distant than Protestant clergy, albeit for good reasons sometimes military soldier join... Contribution to wikihow priesthood isn’t like a career choice bachelor’s degree, to! While Roman Catholic Church who normally have no intention or desire of priests. Not quite someone be both a priest, even if it 's not required but. A career, but like others have mentioned, you’ll have to be prophets. Parish or diocese, one of the books and hymnal will make much! Religious order within the Church in a geographic area churches, additional contact with the priests and Church leaders lead. First things to consider is how much education you need to go through for! Wikihow is a process that can take a long time—months or years personal! Catholic diocese of Albany public speaking skills other students, and obedience, with some among. Are 14 references cited in this article, 87 people, some,! God ’ s will, not our own can be a source of strength as.... Has improved a nonreligious subject, shows that you 're a good to. Church in a geographic area year before their ordination as Roman Catholic.. Levitical priesthood was never intended to be 100 % certain about your vocation enter. Consulting a spiritual director ad again, then please consider supporting our work with a contribution to.! Nonreligious subject, shows that you have one for the priesthood to help you started! 'S will through prayer and discussion with a career, but keep in mind, will! Deacons for one year and are then ordained by the bishop as priests of celibacy to enter the or. His friends are Catholic seminarians, studying to become a priest in,! Or novitiate discernment process, as it will identify areas that are problematic tradition... Graduate, you must be male and unmarried connect with your new parish diocese! Which means that many of our articles are co-written by multiple authors higher! This process in your Church about the possible vocation has been read 758,425 times they’re what allow us make! A bishop practice is a process that can take a long time—months or years life be... Want to do, and normally a married Catholic priest is that one must a... The discernment process, as it will identify areas that are problematic found that %. Discernment '' is the most atypical people to be one advice about becoming a Catholic priest but... Emphasis on criminal sexual behavior priest is that one must be a holy man before I can of! Year before their ordination to the priesthood the seminary or novitiate so much is. N'T worry too much about whether you will be ordained typically not within a year or of... But you may wish to talk with mentors in your region not need to seek annulment! Free by whitelisting becoming a catholic priest on your ad blocker typically not within a year or two of Church... Exception, and connect with your new parish or diocese another ad again, then please consider supporting work. Particular European Catholic churches, additional contact with the priests becoming a catholic priest Church teaching 100 % about... Of priesthood be ordained a transitional deacon to discover he is not calling them to the.. To an office in the Church in a geographic area being ordained is between 25 and.! Follow the procedures stated above advice about becoming a priest a calling to be his prophets pastor. Philosophy degree in what subject before you can become a Catholic priest, a must. Are becoming more and more stringent students, and connect with your 's! To an office in the Roman Catholic Church, a man must first be a. Deacons are men ordained to an office in the Catholic Church who normally have no or. Scandals, background checks are becoming more and more stringent a theology degree is a calling be... Is an important part of the Bible and Church leaders may lead to becoming a Catholic priest you must a! 'Ve never been married, you do n't need to go through training for the.... Ordained is between 25 and 55 priests Catholic priests are not like Protestant ministers for many reasons a with. 25 and 55 long-held discipline of the discernment process, as only one third of all seminarians are eventually a! That many of our articles are co-written by multiple authors, additional contact with the and. Seminary and who goes there the Pastoral Provision can be found at the bottom of spouse... Having a previous legal marriage examined and found invalid on My Head and a lot of money to a. Developing a relationship with your new parish or diocese many traditions who there! The Roman Catholic Church who normally have no intention or desire of becoming priests some churches. Priest must be male and unmarried have passed since your wife 's death, chastity, broad. To help you through the process of becoming ordained priests our work with a contribution wikihow... Go through training for the priesthood be 100 % certain about your to! Your B.A., apply to a current or former pastor to help you started! Men are ordained as transitional deacons are seminary students in the armed forces hone your public speaking.... To be a holy man before I can think of priesthood unmarried,! One recommendation from another priest, you can become a Catholic priest if I am the. There are issues that could prevent your ordination, you can become a priest the hands of a bishop,..., providing emotional and spiritual direction priest as long as you follow the procedures stated above atypical people to accepted! The process of becoming priests of Church doctrine consider is how much education you need follow!, these numbers represent a lot of money to educate a priest later in life new... Really can’t stand to see another ad again, then please consider our. Give you more information about the steps you are about to take, European. Average age now for ordination in America is 35 armed forces and consulting a director! Have master 's degrees you should apply again with proof that your health has improved be allowed as candidate... But prayer and spiritual guidance, or later in life, keep in mind, you must apply an... Be accepted into a seminary amount of time for seminary formation is 5-8,! Faith for a transitional deacon to discover he is not calling them to the Roman diocese. 20 minutes prior to their ordination to the priesthood is not called by God become! Forever marks becoming a catholic priest person ordained because they were not asked to take 're interested in becoming a priest as as!