National Vocation Awareness Week

In the first full week of November, the Catholic Church in the United States celebrates National Vocation Awareness Week. This week-long celebration is an annual opportunity to promote vocations to the priesthood, diaconate and consecrated life through prayer and education, and to renew our prayers and support for those who are considering one of these particular vocations.

As one of the largest Catholic seminaries in the United States, Mundelein Seminary is on the front lines of priestly formation for parishes in more than 25 dioceses across the country and around the world. Since 1921, thousands of seminarians have prayed, studied and discerned at Mundelein. After ordination, these holy, joyful priests have gone on to serve as a bridge between Christ and His people, accompanying their parishioners at the most crucial moments of their lives and reaching out to those on the margins who urgently need to recognize God’s love and mercy in their lives.


During this special year, the Holy Hours for Vocations Centennial Tour is a highlight event. The journey began on October 1, 2021 at Saint Emily Parish in Mount Prospect. Now, our beautiful and historic monstrance will continue on its tour throughout the Chicagoland area through the spring. This beautiful gift to Cardinal Mundelein from Pope Pius XI was first used for the 1926 International Eucharistic Congress in Chicago and on our seminary grounds.

To find when and where you can join a Holy Hour on the tour, visit: 100.usml.edu/events/holy-hours-for-vocations-centennial-tour/


Browse the videos and links below to hear vocation stories from some of our current seminarians and alumni priests, and follow us on social media to keep up with our seminarians discerning their call at Mundelein Seminary.

Most importantly, please ask the Lord for more dedicated, holy priests, deacons and consecrated men and women.  May they be inspired by Jesus Christ, supported by our faith community, and respond generously to God’s gift of a vocation.

Together with you in Christ, we are Mundelein. We form parish priests.

Vocation Stories

Deacon Ben Thomsen of the Archdiocese of Atlanta joined the seminary after originally embarking on a career as a felony prosecutor. In this podcast episode, he shares his thoughts on how his background has influenced his time in seminary, as well as sharing his vocation story and more experiences from his formation.

Seth Hostetler (Third Theology) and Lee Noel (Second Pre-Theology) of the Diocese of Cheyenne, Wyoming talk about how they initially discerned their vocations to the priesthood and what life and the Church are like in their rural home diocese compared to the Archdiocese of Chicago. They also share what they learned in seminary this week.

Father Justin Ryan '18, who now serves as director of vocations for the Archdiocese of Seattle, shares his own journey to the priesthood.

Make A Matching Gift

Thanks to an anonymous donor, we are blessed to announce a $50,000 matching gift toward our Giving Tuesday goal this year. As the holiday season approaches, please consider supporting your future parish priests. Click the link below and your gift will be matched dollar for dollar!