THE Diocesan priestly vocation directors’ workshop held this month was to address the declining number of people entering seminaries.
The four-day programme last week was attended by 23 priests from dioceses in Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands.
The workshop organised by the Catholic Bishops Conference discussed:
- What is vocation: Priest in Melanesia;
- discernment and spiritual direction;
- ministry of the vocation director and;
- vocation promotion strategies.
Fr John Carbrido said vocation promotion was about establishing love and creating and preserving relationships with young people.
“As priests and vocational directors, we need to work hand-in-hand to create an atmosphere where young vocations will grow and flourish,” he said.
Carbrido said young vocation was “a discipleship problem and lack of money.
“Young people not having enough time, or are just not interested, are some of the factors that do not make efforts fruitful”.
Vocation director of the Archdiocese of Mt Hagen Fr Robert Nolie said there were efforts to have more young people join the seminary after completing grade 12.
But they must undertake various tests and training to determine their intellectual capacity.
“With the combined efforts from the laity, religious and vocation directors, a lot more can be done to promote vocation in the diocese and draw in young people to join seminaries,” he said.