Church exec says too few priests in Eastern Visayas
Eastern Visayas is suffering from a shortage of priests, according to church officials.
Fr. Amadeo Alvero, media liaison officer of the Palo Archdiocese, said the region has only 170 priests and at least 4 million Catholics. Of the 170 priests, only 130 are considered active, he said.
“That is why we are visiting various schools, especially the Catholic schools, in the region to encourage students to enter priesthood,” Alvero said last week.
He said the ideal number of priests in the region would be between 500 and 700.
“We really need to pray for more vocations,” he said. But, he added, that very few wanted to become priests.
Last year, of 20 deacons who finished at the Sacred Heart Seminary in Palo, Leyte, only four were ordained, Alvero said.
He said parents tended to discourage their sons from entering priesthood over financial concerns.
Alvero, however, said his archdiocese has taken steps to ensure the future of priests, especially those who would retire from the ministry.
“We have our retirement home and even a cemetery at the archdiocese compound,” he said.
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