1. Share Your Call
-Talk to a Priest, Sister, School chaplain, or reach out to your Diocesan Vocation contacts - when God places the call in your mind or heart it is important to reach out to someone who can listen, encourage, and be a support as you begin your journey of discernment.
As you discern, discover the type of prayer which helps you to spend time with God. Review the practical suggestions on the "What is Discernment page?".
- If you are looking for ideas on where to start, check out "Personal Prayer Life" at Loyola Press website.
3. Find a Spiritual Director
A Spiritual Director is there to listen and walk with you as you grow in deeper understanding of your spiritual life and relationship with God.
- Ask your parish priest or school chaplain if they have any recommendations. You can also contact the Lanteri Center for Spiritual Direction in Denver and ask them for spiritual directors in your area. Check out their website at www.omvusa.org/lanteri-center/about-us/spiritual-direction
4. Attend a Discernment Retreat or Participate in a Discernment Program
Attending a weekend retreat at a seminary or with a community, vocation evenings or joining a discussion group of other men or women discerning a vocation are invaluable in helping one to come to greater clarity about God’s call to priesthood or religious life/consecrated life.
- Men: Contact the Vocation office and ask about upcoming activities and events.
- Women: Contact the Vocation office and ask for resources.
- The Diocese of Dallas has an annual Vocation Awareness Program for those exploring Religious Life. http://vapinfo.org
5. Take the 6 Month Discernment Challenge
This challenge is to put discernment as your main focus for 6months.
6. Where is God Calling Me?
- Men: Ask yourself - Am I called to be a Diocesan Priest? Am I called to the vocation of a Religious Priest or Brother or Monk?
- Women: Ask yourself - Am I called to live in community as a Religious? Am I called to live my vocation fully within the world through a secular institute or secular order? Am I being called to live my vocation individually as a consecrated virgin?
7. Research and Pray
As you answer the questions to where you feel called begin to explore the options and pray
- Men: Check out the websites on the Resources page. Pray - Diocesan or with the Charisms and forms of Religious life (monastic, contemplative, active)
- Women: Check out the websites on the Resources page. Pray with the Charisms and forms of community or consecrated lay (cloistered, monastic, contemplative, active, secular, consecrated virgin)
8. Spend Time with Other Discerners
When you are discerning you may be looking for fellowship with other discerners who can share in prayer, resources, and support.
- Men and Women: Contact the Vocation office to see if there are other discerners.
To gain more information and insight visiting will give you an opportunity to ask questions and to have a glimpse into the life into which you are feeling called.
- Men: Contact the Vocation Director and set up a visit to a seminary, or a Religious community.
- Women: Contact the Vocation Directress at a Religious community and ask if they have a "Come and See" opportunity. If feeling a call to be a consecrated virgin then contact the Diocesan vocation office.
10. TAKE ACTION
Take one step at a time. You will hear along the way that you can only discern so much from the outside. Taking the leap of faith into the world of seminary, religious life, or consecrated life is what gives you the true experience and helps you to see the path clearer in which God is calling you.
- Formation is a step by step process with the purpose to help you grow in better understanding of who you are and your relationship with God. God uses time of formation to stretch and transform you into a stronger Catholic disciple. The beauty is that the formation process will prepare you for the path that God is calling you to whether that is to be a Shepherd, a Servant, or a Lay Disciple we are all called to be Saints in this world. Where is God calling you?