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St Mary's Church Brighton Sacraments Holy Orders Priesthood

Holy Orders

Priesthood & Vocations

What is a vocation?
The word vocation comes from the Latin ‘vocare’, meaning ‘to call’ - so a vocation is a calling. Everyone has a vocation. Our first call is to love God and to be holy, or as Pope Francis put it not long ago, ‘to be saints is not a privilege for a few but a vocation for everyone.’


We are called to a particular kind of work, as St John Henry Newman says,‘God has created me to do Him some definite service; He has committed some work to me which He has not committed to another.’

We are also called to different states of life - these are the vocations of single life, marriage, priesthood and religious life.


How can I discern my vocation?
As members of the Church we each have a vocation to perform a certain function for the building up of God’s Kingdom, as do the different limbs and organs in a body (cf. 1 Cor 12). It is this deeper call that requires us to listen closely to God, in prayer, and watch for the signs of his action in our lives.

This process is called ‘discernment’. God calls each person in a slightly different way. But that does not mean that there are not certain basic signs that might indicate that He is calling you to be a priest.


These signs come, roughly speaking, on three levels:
1. God speaking through your personal relationship with Him.
2. Through the circumstances of your life, and the people of God.
3. Through the Church’s hierarchy.


How do I get involved?

If you believe you have a call to the priesthood or religious life, please contact your parish priest or
our Vocations Director:

Fr Tristan Cranfield, E: or T: 01323 723222.
For more information about the priesthood and religious life, see:

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