Reactions can vary widely when parents discover that their son is considering a single-hearted life of service to God’s people and God’s Church as a priest. Some parents are very happy and eager to provide support while others may have questions or concerns about their son’s discernment process or intended vocation.
Parents are always welcome to speak with the Vocation Director, Fr. Brad Pelzel at (712) 233-7523, or to e-mail him at
with any questions or concerns that they may have. Information offered on the other pages of this site may be of interest to parents as well.
A call to serve the Church as a priest comes from God, and parents play a very important role in making that call heard and by being mirrors of God’s unconditional love. The support parents lend to a young man’s discernment process is more important than any other figure in his life. This reality can sometimes cause a young man to keep his discernment private. He may fear that his parent’s reaction will be less than supportive.
A parent should not take this fear personally. In fact, if you are a parent, the FAQ's about the nine most commonly raised concerns may be helpful to you while you process your feelings about your son’s discernment to serve the Catholic Church as a priest. Another source of information about the issues that parents worry about as their son considers a priestly vocation is the Diocese of Sioux City's Handbook for the Parents of its Seminarians. Finally, the videos available below also provide helpful information.