This week is National Vocations Awareness Week across the Catholic Church in the United States. Each day this week we are bringing you a vocations story. Today we hear from Father John Whitlock, Director of Vocations for the Diocese of Lansing, who was ordained to the sacred priesthood by Bishop Earl Boyea in 2013. Here’s the story of his path to priesthood:
“I grew up in a loving family on a small farm in St. Johns. Faith was always important in the family, and I learned to pray at a young age. I loved to play soccer and had wonderful friends in high school. I attended Grand Valley State University and earned a Master’s degree in accounting.”
“It was not until I was finishing college and started working that my call to the priesthood came. At that time, I was part of a Catholic young adult group, in which all of us were involved in our parishes. I found a great joy in serving, in studying the teachings of the Church, and in going to daily Mass and Eucharistic adoration whenever I could. Our faith became the center of my life.”
“The leader of our group entered the Seminary, and I visited him on a few occasions. Those visits to the seminary moved me deeply, and I began to pray seriously about my vocation. Finally, a mentor challenged me to step up in my faith, I took this as God telling me it was time to apply to the seminary.”
“It has not always been easy, but I am amazed at what the Lord has done in my life since I said ‘yes’ to that invitation. He is never outdone in generosity!”
• Do you feel God may be calling you to the sacred priesthood? Feel free to contact Father Whitlock here.