“Conformed to Christ” – the goal and watchword of every seminarian… To identify with Christ, to become like him.
Such is the heartfelt desire of 11 young men from the diocese of Nueve de Julio currently studying in the seminary of the Archdiocese of Mercedes-Luján in Argentina. Not an easy thing in an environment where, as in Europe and North America, people are increasingly falling away from the Faith. Just 10% of baptised Catholics now regularly attend Sunday Mass. But the yearning for God, for what the early Church Fathers and Saint Peter himself described as “partaking in the divine nature”, is more deeply rooted in the hearts of these young men than anything theworld can offer in the way of power, fame or fortune. They long to serve, to lead others to God through prayer and the Sacraments.
The Sacraments will come after ordination. But already they are pointing the way to God – training catechists, helping in the parishes, visiting sick and elderly priests assisting them in the celebration of Mass, visiting retirement homes and hospitals.Our Lady accompanies them everywhere. For they have embraced that ancient truth: Cum Petro per Mariam ad Jesum. And so they become like Christ. The pandemic has left its mark in Argentina too. Costs are rising, Sunday collections falling. Do they get odd jobs to support themselves, instead of bringing Christ to the people? We gladly promised €3,700 towards the cost of their training, so that Jesus can minister even now to his people.