A recent “Focus on Faith” news report on Fox News addressed the shortfall of men and women who are called to serve as priests and sisters in the Catholic Church. In an effort to understand the reason for the changes and what the numbers mean, Brendan Coffey, SJ, a Jesuit scholastic in the Maryland Province, was interviewed as a rare exception in America—a millennial choosing a religious vocation. Brendan spoke about the life of a Jesuit and how he fell in love with a commitment to service and promoting a God that is deeply in love with His creation.
Jesuit in formation, Brendan Coffey, SJ, provided insight into his call to religious life.
The report referenced research from Georgetown University that shows a steady decline in the number of priests and sisters in the Catholic Church over the last five decades despite an increase in the number of Catholics. Also interviewed was Fr. Thomas Gaunt, SJ, executive director of the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate at Georgetown University. Fr. Gaunt discussed the impact of our older priests and sisters who are dying without the same number of younger men and women choosing religious life. He also pointed out that a smaller number of religious educators engaging with students has had a natural social consequence.
Fr. Thomas Gaunt, SJ, has studied the decline in priests and sisters in the Catholic Church and what it means.
The news report finished with Brendan conveying how he wished more young people could see and experience the good and happy lives he and the other Jesuits in his community are living.
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