Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,Fr. Dominic Toan Tran, Pastor
Grace and peace of our Lord, Jesus Christ be with you. The Sacrament of Holy Order holds a central place within the teachings of the Catholic Church, as affirmed by the Catechism and the Second Vatican Council. It is through the ordained priesthood that we are blessed with the gift of the Eucharist, which nourishes our souls and strengthens our unity as the Body of Christ. Let us recognize the vital importance of encouraging young men to discern a vocation to the priesthood.
In the absence of priests, the celebration of the Holy Eucharist would be impossible. The Eucharist, as “the source and summit of the Christian life” (Lumen Gentium, 11), is a sacred encounter with our Lord Jesus Christ. Through the power of the ordained priesthood, bread, and wine are transformed into the Body and Blood of Christ, becoming for us the true presence of our Savior. The priesthood is therefore indispensable for the continuation of this profound sacrament, which sustains and nourishes our faith.
While the path to the priesthood may involve challenges and sacrifices, it is crucial to approach it with a deep understanding of the divine rewards that await those who respond to God’s call. As followers of Christ, we recognize that true fulfillment lies not in worldly wealth or comfort, but in the eternal promises of God. The priesthood offers a unique opportunity to participate in Christ’s redemptive mission, and those who faithfully serve as priests will be richly rewarded in the life to come.
It is equally important to encourage young men and women to consider the vocation of religious life and consecrated service. Within these vocations, individuals dedicate themselves wholeheartedly to God, embracing the vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience. Men, through their ordination, and those men and women who live a consecrated religious life, become witnesses to the transformative power of the Gospel, offering themselves as instruments of God’s love and mercy to His people.
To the young men and women who feel the stirrings of God’s call in their hearts, I invite you to discern this calling with prayerful openness and guidance. Please do not hesitate to call the parish office at (561) 488-1373, or the Diocese of Palm Beach Office of Vocation at (561) 775-9552 for further information and assistance. Embracing a vocation to the priesthood or religious life is an extraordinary privilege, allowing you to play a unique role in the salvation of souls and the building of God’s Kingdom on Earth.
In our prayers, let us beseech the Lord to send forth laborers into His harvest. May we, as a faith community, actively support and encourage those considering vocations, recognizing the immense value they bring to the spiritual well-being of God’s people.
May the Holy Spirit guide you in your discernment, and may the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Mother of the Church, accompany you on this sacred journey.
In Christ’s love,
St. Vincent de Paul Regional Seminary, Boyton Beach, Florida
St. John Vianney College Seminary, Miami, Florida