Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Australia's Post-WYD Religious Resurgence

Many Catholics find that the World Youth Day Catholic festivals started by Pope John Paul II have many evil things happening during them. I suppose that may be so. But reports from Australia inform us that many good things happen also.

We’ve written about this both during and after Sydney’s World Youth Day, but Sunday’s Daily Telegraph reports that Sydney’s seminaries have three times as many seminarians as there were in 2000.

For the first time in 10 years, 60 men are currently studying for the priesthood. Eighty percent of the men are under the age of 30. The youngest is 19. The majority are in their early or mid-20s.

Some have cited World Youth Day’s role.

“There is definitely a renewed interest in the Church and the priesthood,” said Father Anthony Percy, rector of the Seminary of the Good Shepherd, one of two seminaries in Sydney.

“We had the ordination of four priests a few months ago — that hasn’t happened since 1983.” National Catholic Register


Fr. William Baer said...

This Fall I will be surveying our 163 seminarians about the sources of inspiration for their vocations. Specifically, I will be asking them if they have participated in a World Youth Day, a pilgrimage to Rome or to a Catholic Shrine, a traditional Latin Mass, a Perpetual Adoration Chapel, a Steubenville Youth Conference, a NET Ministries event, a Youth 2000 Conference, an NCYC Conference, a diocesan vocations camp, a parish youth group, a visit to a religious order (and which one), a Mission Trip, etc., and to indicate whether any of these played a part in their decision to attend seminary. I'll be happy to report back with the results of the survey.
Father William Baer
Rector, St. John Vianney Seminary

Anonymous said...

That will be a very fascinating report, Fr Baer. I look forward to reading it.

Thanks, Ray, for this post. I just sent a copy/paste of it to my Aussie friend.