Areas of Concentration
Broken up into several Areas of Concentration, the High Calling Program offers the spiritual direction necessary to practice good discernment.
Due to the central place of prayer in discernment, the High Calling Program places an emphasis on mental prayer.
Mental prayer is that in which the sentiments expressed are one’s own and not those of another person, and the expression of these sentiments is mainly, if not entirely, interior and not externalized (e.g., not vocalized).
Mental prayer is accomplished by internal acts of the mind and affections that are a loving and discursive (reflective) consideration of religious truths or some mystery of faith.
In addition to mental prayer, men engage in a study of liturgical prayer which comes in the form of how to pray the Mass well and properly pray the Liturgy of the Hours. “The Liturgy of the Hours is the public prayer which sanctifies the whole course of the day and night. Christ thus continues his priestly work through the prayer of His priestly people.” (CCC, 1174)
Discernment is the process by which we come to understand God’s will for us.
Every vocation to the priesthood comes from God and is a mystery disclosed over time. To practice good discernment, one needs to pray and receive spiritual direction.
Spiritual direction is a conversation that leads another to union with Christ in the unique friendship He offers to each person.
The High Calling Program is building a spiritual direction program that will identify, educate and train priests in the art of spiritual direction.
Saint Jerome reminds us that “Ignorance of Scripture is ignorance of Christ.”
Sacred Scripture is the soul of all good prayer and discernment.
As each module breaks open the Word of God as the center of its teaching, the High Calling Program seeks to provide each man with a biblical worldview and assist him in thinking with the Church.
The High Calling Program takes up the wisdom of Saint John Paul II’s Theology of the Body which offers an integrated vision of the human person, body and soul.
The human body has a specific meaning, making visible an invisible reality, communicating fundamental truths about the nature and call of Man. Authentic masculinity and the gift of celibacy are explored in this context.
In an age of growing indulgence with gaming and videos, and less moderation in general, the High Calling Program seeks to encourage detoxification from the world by offering tools that promote balanced participation in social media, and encouraging the cardinal virtue of temperance.
In view of this, there is also a priority to identify the scourge of pornography and examine ways to be free from addiction to pornography.
To form a missionary disciple, the first task is to accompany him as he journeys to the truth in his humanity. When the Word became flesh, he constituted all that is good, noble and true about humanity as the pathway to the Father. Coming into maturity is part of this pathway.
This means that a missionary disciple needs to be accompanied into facing difficult personal challenges inherent to natural maturation, or else his discipleship risks self-contradiction. The High Calling Program helps facilitate this missionary journey.
A disciple left unaccompanied or who forsakes the accompaniment of another will not be able to assert himself in the situation at hand. The Father has chosen to give him confidence through the ministry of another.
Until he humbles himself to receive this gift, a disciple will not have the confidence required to make the painful sacrifices by which alone the Father’s glory is manifest. Thus, the importance of accompaniment in the initial phase of discernment.