Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
Week of September 29, 2003
The call came gently, quietly
Fr. Paul Moret's path to the priesthood began with going to daily Mass
By BILL GLEN
WCR Staff Writer
It wasn't a bolt of lightning nor the sight of a burning bush that convinced Father Paul Moret to enter the seminary and dedicate his life to serving others.
It had more to do with his generous heart and the observations of others that revealed his true calling.
On Sept. 20, the archdiocese's vocations director told his story to a group of about 40 people who gathered at Camp Oselia for the annual vocations retreat.
Using an example from Matthew's Gospel that whatever you do for someone you do for God, Moret said discerning his own vocation came to him gradually.
"Service to others is one of the ways God speaks to our hearts," he said. "To challenge ourselves to do more is the power of God working in us.
"In my own vocation, there were many ways in which God spoke to me. It wasn't something so clear as, 'Paul, I want you to become a priest.'
"Sometimes I'm a little bit hesitant to share my vocations story because it's not a spectacular thing. Some people have spectacular vocation stories, but not me. Mine was more of a gentle leaning in a particular direction by God placing certain signs in my heart, such as my own attraction to the Eucharist."
Growing up, Moret recalled, going to Mass was a daily event. This exposure to the Eucharist was, he believes, one of the foundations of his own vocation.
"I believe God spoke to me through my failures.
"I believe God spoke to me through what other people said.
"One person in particular I used to work with said to me I would make a good priest. How he ever came up with that I don't know. He knew I went to church and he knew I was devoted to my faith," Moret said.
"I believe that was a way God spoke to me."
Service to others will help people discern their vocation in life. There is a lot each person has to give, he said.
"You don't have to do everything, but you should try and do something."
Moret then asked the audience to reflect upon their own service to others. He wanted them to look deep within themselves to see how serving has enhanced their lives, as a way of discerning their own vocation, possibly in religious life.
"Serving is not always easy. Serving is hard," said 24-year-old Lyndsey Ferguson.
The Life-Vision Communications employee from St. Albert, was attending her first retreat.
"I'm working with Holy Family Parish and the life team and with my job at Life Vision, there is a lot of service to children, and just being Christ-like, I guess. It's being available for being Jesus' hands and feet."
Ferguson wondered exactly how she is supposed to serve God.
"It's humbling in a way, so you can hear him and be assertive to where he wants you to go. But where in the future, I'm not really sure. I'm trying to be really open to what God wants me to do," she said.
"I know I'm not made for the 9-to-5 world, so I'm letting God lead me one step at a time. I'd like to know right now, but he is not going to let me know.
Serving others is something 17-year-old Chris Vollman has done virtually his entire life.
And the Provost, Alta., Grade 12 student believes his first step out of high school will take him to St. Joseph's Seminary.
"This is my first time at Oselia but I attended Our Lady of Victory Camp near Bentley in 2000," he said.
Vollman began altar serving in Grade 4 and continues to serve as an adult.
"I'm thinking very much about joining the priesthood. Very much. After this year at St. Thomas Aquinas, I'll probably go to the seminary," he said.
"Serving has brought me closer to God in several ways.
"I dealt with my grandma's death this year. It's made me closer to God."