Is it a lonely life being a priest?
There is no doubt that priesthood entails a significant sacrifice. You would be giving up the possibility of an intimate, exclusive relationship which is, for most people, the normal, natural way of life. This is not an easy option, even though it has its own rewards.
What keeps many priests free of the burden of persistent loneliness in this situation is a deep faith and an intimate relationship with Jesus Christ in prayer. What often flows from this is a number of loving, tender relationships with God’s people whom he is called to serve.
Obviously it is important for priests to cultivate a healthy, balanced life-style not only in terms of physical health, but also in terms of friendships and social life in general.
A certain degree of loneliness is unavoidable in the priesthood. But it is too for other states of life, and in all cases professional help is available.
Most popular questions
- I feel I have a specific charism to youth outreach. Can I live this charism out as a priest, or must I follow the charism of the order I join?
- What can I do as a priest that I cannot do as a layperson working for a charity or NGO?
- Why are there so many different religious organisations?
- The idea of public speaking is very challenging to me and I avoid it if possible. How can I be a priest when I hate public speaking?
- Why do I have to be celibate to be a priest?
- I hear my local priest say in his homily that there’s a shortage of priests in Ireland, is there really a shortage of priests?
- If I become a priest, will I be living with mostly elderly men?
- Would entering a religious community mean that I would have to sever my relationships with family and friends?
- Why are there so many different religious orders?
- As a priest if I decide that I no longer want to do something, such as work in a specific parish, do I have any say or is it all out of my hands?