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Monday, December 5, 2016
Westminster: rise in number of vocations to priesthood
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¬†This year has seen an increase in the number of men starting to prepare for the priesthood in the Catholic Diocese of Westminster. This autumn, ten men, aged between 19 and 51, have started the six year period of prayer, study and experience of pastoral work which leads to ordination. This compares to three men who started in 2004 and two in 2003. The new seminarians come from a variety of backgrounds including: Tesco, the NHS, the Royal Opera House, an Anglican Religious Community, Computing and a Government Ministry. Most are based at Westminster's Allen Hall seminary in Chelsea, with others at Beda College in Rome and the English College at Vallodolid, Spain. As part of the process of encouraging men to become the priests of tomorrow, a special vocations weekend will be held at the Allen Hall seminary in London on 26 ≠ 27 November. Called 'Walk With Me', the weekend will be led by Fr Chris Vipers, the Vocations Director for the Diocese of Westminster. Bishop Alan Hopes, whose Diocesan responsibilities include vocations said: " It is extremely encouraging that 2005 has seen a significant increase in the number of men who are preparing for the priesthood in Westminster. Earlier this year, Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor, as part of the 'Graced by the Spirit' Green Paper on the future of the Diocese, asked us to pray and encourage priestly vocations, saying that there is no reason to lose confidence in the Lord of the harvest who desires to send labourers into His harvest. I very much hope that the example of our new seminarians, together with initiatives such as the new website for vocations 'UK Priest' will enable more men to be open to calling of God to start the formation process leading to priesthood." For more information see: http://www.ukpriest.org
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