When my cousin wondered why I didn't remember all the names of my dad's merged families, I thought of marriage, and more.
My parents, both from northern Michigan towns, gave birth to seven of us, including two sets of twins.
That meant there were four infants in cloth diapers before the debut of throw-away plastic ones. Only years apart, my parents had their hands full.
Yet, I never heard they were "too busy" to make visits to relatives, and, to have family relatives over for dinner, and such.
Marriage was their vocation.
They supported and encouarged whatever their children wanted to end up doing as a career, or, a vocation, a calling.
Pastors at my home church impressed me with how they helped people in pastoral care, hospital visits, calls to the jails, home visitations, and the like.
Pusuing priesthood was my aim after high school.
I wanted to study medicine but the Maker had other plans.
In trust, I followed that call after long periods of discernment with people I knew.
Some encouraged me, while others said, it would be a lonely life.
The ideals are respected by me as an ordained pastor today.
I relish serving the vulnerable, those in crisis, addicted, and others while leading Mass, our
worship time daily and on Sundays.
Healing is mending and more.
It's a joy to witness people heal up from image issues to attachment disorders that Saints John of the Cross and Teresa of Avila, Spain, addressed in the consolation and desolation of life's trek.
These mystics, head over heel in love with God, emerged with spiritual solutions to problems long before the advent of psychiatry.
Vocations do a world of good, including sacraments Catholics call baptism, eucharist, confirmation, reconciliation, martrimony, ordination, and, anointing of the sick (formerly extreme unction when one was dying).
Serving as a priest, like life's roller-coaster ride, has its ups and down. Life is like that.
For the most part, I savor having served for thirty-seven years, and sixty-three as a baptized believer.
Thank God for holy matrimony. I would not be ordained today without it.
If you're curious and discerning a vocation, give a call to the Reverend Tim Birney at the Archdiocese of Detroit at (313) 237 5800, or, chat with a religious, a brother, a sister, a nun, a married person, a single, a priest, among others who attract you by their career, or holiness of life.