Sunday, June 14, 2009


Copyright 2007 M. Mitchell


The process of discernment is an ongoing process for those in formation to become Catholic Deacons. However, the biggest surprise for me has been the level of this discernment. We all continue to discern if God is truly calling us to this ministry, but there are other calls you receive; and with those calls, there are choices that must be made.

This happened to me recently.

We all have been given many opportunities to serve in a variety of ways; from volunteering at the Eucharistic Congress to assisting in our local churches. The ones that are most special are those that allow us to spend time with our brothers in formation since our time together is almost always in the context of classes. Each year we have an opportunity to travel to Jamaica to assist the Missionaries of the Poor in Kingston, Jamaica. I was looking forward to the trip since it would have given me an opportunity to see some of my friends who live in Jamaica and spend quality time with some of my brothers in formation.

But something was pulling at me; it was not what I was supposed to be doing. I began to remember a conversation I had with Deacon Joe Reynolds concerning my vocation. Deacon Joe was one of the most kind men I had ever met and was my mentor. The one thing he stressed to me that day was that 50% of our parish spoke Spanish and therefore I needed to make it a priority to learn the language before ordination. Deacon Joe died the next day. I had tried to pick up the language (Rosetta Stone) but it never became a priority. I now feel it never became a priority because this would be something I must do alone.

I chose not go to Jamaica and focus my time and money on learning Spanish. When I finally made the decision, I felt at peace. Although this path will be taken by myself, I am confident it will open doors I never knew were possible.

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