Poland: A New Drop in Vocations

Source: FSSPX News

A new decline in priestly and monastic vocations has been noticed in Poland: “For the first time in several years, the number of students in diocesan seminaries has dropped lower than 4,000”, indicates the Church's information agency, KAI.  687 Polish entered the first year of formation in diocesan seminaries in the fall of 2009, 32 fewer than in 2008.  And 655 young people entered the novitiates of masculine religious orders, which is a smaller number than in preceding years.  The Fransiscan and Salesian orders are the ones that have the most novices.

Entries in feminine orders have also dropped for the fifth consecutive year: there are 300 young women in the prenoviciate, compared to 723 ten years ago.  And 46 have decided to enter  cloistered contemplative orders, compared to the 117 ten years ago.  Consequently, 28 convents shut down in Poland during the year 2009, reveals the agency KIA.

Fr. Jozef Kloch, spokesman for the Bishops' Conference of Poland, declared to a correspondent from ENI that “if the decline continues in the years to come, we will be able to speak of a veritable tendency”.  “For the moment, we must work with the young people to awaken vocations and to encourage them to answer the call.”  Today, Polish priests represent a fifth of all the Catholic Church's priests in Europe, where numerous dioceses depend on the Polish Church to make up for local pastoral shortages.  “Poland is still one of the countries with the most priests and our missionary action continues”, concluded Fr. Kloch nonetheless. (Sources: apic/eni – DICI n°216, June 5, 2010)