The traditional doctrine of the Catholic Church describes the priest as Teacher of the Word, Minister of the Sacraments and Leader of the Christian community. His functions are therefore tripartite in nature, consisting respectively of teaching, sanctification and governance. The priesthood is God’s gift for the Church. It is one of the seven sacraments of the Church which not only confers grace but power to preside over the holy sacrifice of the Eucharist and to forgive sins. In this study, we employ qualitative and quantitative methods of research with the use of primary and secondary sources for data collection. The study uses descriptive research design in a social survey, with the Catholic Ecclesiastical Provinces of Accra, Cape Coast and Kumasi as the case study. Non-probability (quota and purposive) sampling technique was used to select a sample size of 450 respondents from the three ecclesiastical provinces with each province assigned a quota of 150. Out of the 450, 300 were retrieved and carefully analysed manually and descriptively. The views of other 30 seminary formators from the three provincial seminaries were solicited through one-on-one interviews The study reveals the complex nature and difficulties associated with vocations to the priesthood and religious life in Africa, a continent saturated unfortunately with poverty, marital issues, tribalism/ethnocentrism, corruption and other numerous vices, but at the same time a continent full of hope for African Christianity.
Keywords: Vocation, Mission, Ministry, Holy Orders, Evangelical Counsels, Religious Men and Women, Catholic Priests, Persona Christi
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FRANCIS APPIAH-KUBI, PhD is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Religious Studies, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi-Ghana. Email: email@example.com.
LEO ANDOH KORSAH, MPhil is a lecturer at the Methodist College of Education, Akyem Asene-Aboabo, Oda- Eastern Region – Ghana, and presently the Ag. Vice Principal of the College. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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