Application Interviews: Reflecting Further on the Call to Glenmary

Brother David Henley, Glenmary vocation directorFebruary 2014

"God is in every person's life. God is in everyone's life. Even if the life of a person has been a disaster, even if it is destroyed by vices, drugs or anything else—God is in this person's life. You can, you must try to seek God in every human life."                                        —Pope Francis

A few new men recently entered into the formal discernment process to join Glenmary Home Missioners. This formal process—which does include a formal application—also includes interviews with me and other Glenmary priests and brothers.

The interview is my favorite part of the process because it is an opportunity for me to get to know each man one-on-one. Unlike formal job interviews, the questions we ask someone who desires to join Glenmary Home Missioners are more in depth than just asking about his previous work experiences. They encourage the applicant to reflect on his calling and how he has discerned his decision to join the community.

The interviews might include any of the following questions: Describe your prayer life. Who is God for you? How has God been present in your life? I like to ask the individual to share examples in his life that indicate he has the ability to live the promises of poverty, chastity and obedience. Not everyone has the same answer. But applicants do share in the desire to follow their call as celibates who are willing to live out the promises of poverty, obedience and prayer. These types of questions lead to a mutual sharing and can indicate whether a person is holistically ready to embark on that next step of entry into the formation program.

I think one of the reasons I enjoy the interviewing is because, every time, I am deeply inspired by the man's faith journey. The interview is a chance for me to recognize God in this person's life. In the applicant's answers, I often hear similarities to my own vocation story. Other times, a man's story, prayer life or vocation path may be different from my own but just as inspiring. Although each Glenmarian may have had a unique call or path in his vocation discernment, our calls have led us all to the Glenmary way of life, serving in Mission Land, USA. In that way, meeting with and interviewing someone who is applying to join Glenmary reaffirms my own call.

All those men who are discerning a call to Glenmary are invited to visit our missions and meet our missioners—to learn more about the Glenmary way of life and discern if they are ready to apply and be interviewed. A firsthand experience at a mission is an ideal way to continue that discernment. Contact our office if you would like to schedule a mission trip.

If you would like more information about Glenmary Home Missioners or would like to speak with someone about following your call to be a missioner, you can call 513-881-7494, or contact us via our Web site, or send an e-mail, or contact us through Facebook.

You can also read previous columns by Brother David on the Glenmary Web site.