Fishers of Men, an 18-minute film on the priesthood sponsored by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, is being premiered in America this week. The film, produced by Grassroots Films of Brooklyn, NY, is a fast-paced DVD which shows many of the facets of a priest's daily life. Several priests provide testimony to the importance they place on their own vocation. A dramatic re-enactment portrays how a priest can inspire a vocation through his service to someone in need of priestly ministry. The film is part of a process of encouraging priests to step back from their daily lives and to reflect on the many positive reasons why they pursued a vocation to the priesthood, to discuss those reasons with their brother priests, and ultimately to share them with other men to invite them to consider the priesthood. The video is accompanied by questions for discussion among priests who view the film together at their diocesan vocation summit. One question asks: "Reflecting upon your own vocation and reasons for becoming a priest, are they similar to those presented in the film?" Another asks: "What part of the film do you think will most inspire young men in your parish to consider priesthood as a possible vocation?" The film is also intended to be used by priests in discussions with men considering the priesthood. Discussion questions are provided for these conversations as well. One quotes a priest in the film who says, "The Catholic priesthood is an instrument for change that the world needs today" and asks: "How can the priest effect change in the world?" Men who saw an advance screening of the film have praised it highly. "It is by far the best vocation video I have ever seen. It will touch the hearts and minds of many across the country" said Brandon Macadaeg of California. "Fishers of Men goes beyond what any person could expect of a vocations film. This film touched my heart and soul!" said Chad Eckles of Utah. Joseph Campo, producer of Fishers of Men, said: " I speak for everyone on the Grassroots Films staff when I say that we have always had a positive view and appreciation of the Catholic priesthood throughout the world, and we are grateful for the opportunity to portray what it means to be a priest in the film, Fishers of Men." Monsignor David J Malloy, General Secretary of the USCCB, said: "I thought Fishers of Men was extremely moving. It reminds us why we became priests." The Reverend Edward J Burns, Executive Director of the USCCB Secretariat for Vocations and Priestly Formation said: "With the release of the Fishers of Men DVD, all the elements are in place for the Priestly Life and Vocation Summit project." "Through workshops for priests, the goal of this is project is to renew and regenerate the priesthood in the United States. It is intended to help priests articulate the joy in their vocation that the overwhelming majority of priests feel and to give them confidence that if they extend the invitation to consider the priesthood, they will find that Catholic men today, especially young men, are open to the challenge," Father Burns said. "Working with Mr Joe Campo at Grassroots Films and his entire crew has been a joy. They have a tremendous amount of talent and zeal. Their love, appreciation and loyalty for the Catholic Church are quite evident in their work," Fr Burns added. The Fishers of Men trailer can be viewed at www.usccb.org/vocations.
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