The latest edition of a Vatican magazine aimed at increasing priestly vocations and encouraging the spiritual adoption of priests has been released in English.
"We need to pray hard for vocations and to support priests around the
world," said Monsignor Richard R. Soseman from the Congregation for the
"That's why we pushed so hard to have this book published, and we're so pleased that it finally has been," he told CNA Feb. 1.
"Eucharistic Adoration for the Sanctification of Priests and Spiritual
Maternity," was published in Spanish and Italian in 2008, and finally in
English in 2011.
And with the new edition released in January, the Congregation for the Clergy hopes it will sell over 1 million copies.
"The first edition in 2008 was put together to help remind people to
pray for vocations and for priests," said Msgr. Soseman, who worked with
The booklet, written by the congregation's head, Cardinal Mauro
Piacenza, includes the stories of people who offered their lives for
priests or prayed for them.
It also tells the story of a miraculous abundance of vocations in the
small Italian village of Lu, where in less than a century over one-third
of its population became priests or nuns.
There were 323 religious who
came from its less than 1,000 inhabitants between 1881 and the 1940s.
"The magazine also encourages spiritual maternity, which means a person
'adopts' a specific priest that they will pray for," Msgr. Soseman
Another section of the 52-page booklet offers reflections on how to
pray better and some recommended prayers, such as the Chaplet of Divine
Mercy or an hour of Eucharistic adoration.
"The Pope has recently given the Congregation for the Clergy oversight
over seminaries and vocations to the priesthood,” he noted, adding that
the “booklet fits in very nicely with that since it encourages priestly
He explained that the Congregation for Clergy now has oversight over Catholic universities and the life of religious.
The Congregation for Catholic Education was first charged with
overseeing seminarians in 1914 because they were responsible for the
institutions where seminarians were taught.
According to the Cardinal Piacenza, the previous edition of the booklet
was popular during the Year for Priests, when he received letters from
India, Malayzia, Australia, France and the U.K, saying it had encouraged
and moved them.
He noted that "a priest can do great work, but if he has a religious
forum the Holy Spirit can help him to inspire more people."
"That is our foundation for this booklet, to inspire more people to
pray for priests because the history of the Church shows us how
challenging the life of a priest can be," Msgr. Soseman said.
Other recent publications released by the Congregation for Clergy
include a guide for confessions in several languages from 2012, as well
as a pocket guide for priests to prepare for confessions.
The congregation will soon publish a new edition of "The Directory for
the Life and Ministry of Priests," along with new editions of previously