Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Vocation, Vocation, Vocation

Sometimes I forget how horrid the vocations crisis is. Only 22 seminarians enrolled in an archdiocese of 2.5 million Catholics. Zero in the first-year theology program. How's this for "hope":
The Rev. Luke Sweeney, director of vocations for the archdiocese — which covers the Bronx, Manhattan, Staten Island and seven counties west and north of the city — says the church must make its case if it hopes to reinvigorate a priesthood that is increasingly elderly. “How do we get the ‘cool’ factor back into the priesthood?” Father Sweeney said. “If we don’t sell the priesthood, we can’t legitimately ask a young man to consider the priesthood as a vocation.”
With vocations directors who thinks the priesthood needs to be sold and made cool, who needs Satan the Great Destroyer of the Sacred Presbyterum? Even if I were considering the priesthood, a comment like that from the guy who has been entrusted with formation of the future priesthood for one of our preeminent dioceses only tells me to save my marbles for a calling with a little more self-respect. It's is a total admission of the emptiness and impotence of modern Western Catholicism and it's totally consistent with my sense of the Cardinal Egan's therapeutic-bureaucratic style. Talk about out of touch and clinginess.