UP Catholic 07 15 2016 E Edition Page 32

BISHOP JOHN DOERFLER, Blessings on your 25th Jubilee! Thank you for shepherding the Diocese of Marquette. You are in our prayers. D - Sisters of St. Paul de Chartres 32 July 15, 2016 THE U.P. CATHOLIC www.upcatholic.org For those discerning a vocation, Bishop Do- erfler recommends getting some guidance in developing their prayer life because you need a good prayer life to discern that call. He also suggests anyone in the diocese discerning a vocation talk to someone like Father Ben Hasse, the diocesan vocations director for the priest- hood, Deacon Jack Leadbetter for the diaconate or one of the religious sisters in the diocese for the religious life. He also encourages sincere discernment to the vocation of marriage. Just because most people are called to that vocation we don't - and I think very unfortu- nately - we don't give it enough attention. But there's also some very prayerful discernment that needs to go into discerning that vocation. We have to realize that marriage is sort of the foundational vocation for the Church and society. Marriage and family is the primary community within the Church. It's the primary community within society. And, our Church and our society are only as strong as our marriages are. Bishop Doerfler said. Editor's note: For more information on voca- tions in the Diocese of Marquette, visit http:// www.dioceseofmarquette.org/vocations. BY JOHN FEE THE U.P. CATHOLIC Even though prayer has always been an import- ant part of his life, Bishop John Doerfler said he is probably praying even more since his episcopal ordination. His day starts with an hour with the Lord in his chapel. Following the example of Jesus to go off to a lonely place and pray, he has a monthly day of recollection and twice yearly goes on retreat for several days. Everything flows out of that prayer life and has to be the foundation of my life, said Bishop Doerfler. The relationship with the Lord Jesus is most central. One must take time to be with him. A relationship with Jesus is key to Bishop Doerfler's challenge to his new diocese at his episcopal or- dination to Be a friend of Jesus. Make a friend. Introduce your friend to Jesus. Bishop Doerfler said the high points of his ministry have been celebrating the Mass and celebrating the sacrament of penance. But he added that ordaining priests and deacons have been another joyful part of ministry. I find as a bishop the celebration of the ordi- nation of a deacon or a priest to be a privileged exercise of spiritual fatherhood. Of course it is through the grace of the Holy Spirit that these men are ordained, and I am merely a minister of the grace of the Holy Spirit. But I find that to be a very deeply spiritual experience of this fatherhood to which I am called as a priest and a bishop, said Bishop Doerfler. Teaching is something that Bishop Doerfler is drawn to and even gave serious discernment to entering religious life that had teaching as a pri- mary apostolate. However he said he was certain that God was calling him to diocesan priesthood. During his time with the Diocese of Green Bay, he taught as a normal part of being a pas- tor. He also taught at Sacred Heart Seminary and School of Theology in Hales Corners, Wis. He currently gives talks at functions across the diocese and teaches an elective course online for Sacred Heart Seminary in Detroit. Teaching is very much at the heart and life of a priest, and even more so as a bishop, he said. Teaching is considered one of the primary re- sponsibilities of a bishop. I look to do that spe- cifically in a number of ways. I use my column in The U.P. Catholic as a teaching moment. That column comes out in print as well as podcast and YouTube video. As a priest in Wiscon- sin, Bishop Doerfler was assigned to parishes with frade schools. He said, Visiting the schools is something joyful and uplifting. Bishop Doerfler said, I also would like to highlight something very important we have here in the Diocese of Marquette, and I believe elsewhere, is the absolutely outstanding faithful young people we have. I think of my experience last year of going to the Steubenville Conference and am going on that again this year, to spend three days with just outstanding high school students is some- thing very joyful. I am very, very impressed with our college students involved with campus ministry. I keep wondering, 'Where are all these wonderful young people coming from?' They are really great examples and it's very encouraging to me to see this, Bishop Doerfler said. When the troubles of the world can bring about discouragement, which Bishop Doerfler called poisonous, he said, Young people have this incredible contribution to the life of the Church by reminding us that we always need to be young, we always need to be growing, we always need to be hopeful, we always need to be optimistic. Its been a real privilege to serve here in the Diocese of Marquette, said Bishop Doerfler. We are so blessed in this diocese. We have an amazing, outstanding presbyterate - the priests are truly very fine - and there's so many dedi- cated lay faithful, deacons, religious and so forth in the diocese. Bishop Doerfler's message to the diocese is, Do not hesitate to give your life and heart to Jesus. He is the buried treasure, he the pearl of great price that's worth selling all and buying. VOCATIONS: Bishop Doerfler's 25th jubilee FROM PAGE 31 Bishop Doerfler on prayer, high points, youth s a f s u h i COURTESY OF KATELYN MCKEEN Bishop John Doerfler rides a bus back from the 2015 Steubenville Conference with youth and chaperons that attended.

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