Tag Archive for 'Export of priests'

India, exporter of priests, may keep them home

As families have fewer children and the Indian economy offers more career options, the West may need to look elsewhere to fill its empty pulpits. Laurie Goodstein from Aluva, India, in International Herald Tribune:

Students at St. Paul's Minor Seminary in the Irinjalakuda Diocese in India taking a ministry trip. [NYTimes photo]

Students at St. Paul's Minor Seminary in the Irinjalakuda Diocese in India taking a ministry trip.

In the sticky night air, next to a grove of mahogany trees, nearly 50 young men in madras shirts saunter back and forth along a basketball court, reciting the rosary.

They are seminarians studying to become Roman Catholic priests. Together, they send a great murmuring into the hilly village, mingling with the Muslim call to prayer and the chanting of Vedas from a Hindu temple on a nearby ridge.

Young men willing to join the priesthood are plentiful in India, unlike in the United States and Europe. Within a few miles of this seminary, called Don Bosco College, are two much larger seminaries, each with more than 400 students.

As a result, bishops trek here from the United States, Europe, Latin America and Australia looking for spare priests to fill their empty pulpits. Hundreds have been allowed to go, siphoning support from India’s widespread network of Catholic churches, schools, orphanages, missionary projects and social service programs.

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