Soccer player retires to enter seminary.
Being a girl this was not a consideration for me, but being a writer, I had to think about it in terms of why my young, male character wanted to be a priest. In the last year or so, I've read about young priests or seminarians just to help me flesh out my character. But as a Catholic, I've also thought about this as well.
Honestly, as bad as things have been for the Church lately, I think it will get better. I am glad to see young men wanting to pursue the priesthood. Having recently met one of the newly ordained priests in my archdiocese, I know and feel the Church is going to be all right. It will just take a long time to heal and recover.
Still, I cringe every time I see allegations of sex abuse and want to jump on the defensive about how it happens more often in other religions, schools and homes, but it's more fun to pick on the Catholics. But what happened-- the abuse, the aftermath, the moving of priests and the cover-ups were inexcusable. It never should have happened. Having to live with that as a Catholic is disheartening.
As Andrew, the priest character in my story, told his sister, the Church will weather this as it has weathered other things in the past. I think it's true. Hopefully, in the near futures seminaries in the US will fill up and one day parishes without priests will have at least one or two.
Sigh. Yes, I'm still a bit idealistic, but sometimes, cynicism only makes me feel worse.