Unlike other Roman Catholic seminarians, Bryan Dolejsi didn’t grow up an altar boy or go to Catholic schools. He didn’t throw himself into church youth groups. He didn’t hear the call to priesthood his entire life, but rather, one routine day in college as he studied Chinese history in the library.
"It was definitely a very clear moment. It was just (God saying), ‘I want you to be a priest.’ I thought, ‘Oh, that’s weird. That didn’t come from me,’ " said Dolejsi, who had always assumed he’d get married and have kids. He had a girlfriend at the time, to whom he had to explain God’s request of him to "love in a different way."
This summer, after a nine-year journey of prayer and self-analysis, Dolejsi will start his last year of graduate-level theological studies, at a time when the numbers of American priests and seminary enrollments have plunged to all-time lows.
Definitely not a factually correct statement about American seminary enrollments being at an all time low and the next paragraph says that Seattle’s case bucks the national trend.
Dolejsi is part of a local trend bucking the national drift. He’s part of a bumper crop of seminarians sponsored by the Seattle Archdiocese — the highest number the local church has had in decades. At 30, Dolejsi — a fan of ultimate Frisbee and mountain biking — is also part of a new generation of younger men interested in wearing the collar.
…Soon after Dolejsi heard his calling, he told a woman at a party about his plans. "She said, ‘You seem really normal to be doing that.’ I thought, is that a compliment, or not?" he said, laughing.
"That summarizes the contemporary mind-set in general; it’s seen as something that’s odd, or a novelty."
…Rich Shively, the archdiocese’s vocations director, attributes those changes to two factors: an increased local focus in encouraging young men to consider the priesthood, and a growing orthodoxy among young Catholics influenced by the long papacy of John Paul II.
"Our approach to vocations has been intentionally low-key and invitational," he said. [Source]
Wow I wouldn’t think that anybody would boast that there vocations program was low key and invitational. I wonder just how many of the currently 35 (almost a triple increase in the last 12 years) seminarians considered their vocation because of low-key program Though it might be that in the case of Bryan Dolejsi that God was definitely not low key in informing him of his vocation.