Veteran priest: future clerics should examine their motives

As Father Thomas T. Polk walked down the center isle of the Cathedral of Mary Our Queen, Homeland, immediately following his 1967 ordination, the show of support from the many priests throughout the Archdiocese of Baltimore reinforced his sudden status as a priest.
“Seeing all of those faces of the people who were there to celebrate our ordination was so impressive,” said Father Polk, 66, senior priest of St. Francis of Assisi, Baltimore. “That is when it hit me that I was now really a priest.”
As a boy, he worshipped at St. Ann, Baltimore, and the parish was his first assignment after his ordination 40 years ago, serving as associate pastor from 1967 to 1970 and as administrator from 1970 to 1976.
In 1976 he became pastor of St. Katharine of Sienna, Baltimore, then became pastor of St. Ignatius, Urbana, in 1989, then pastor of St. Ann, Hagerstown, in 2002 and became senior priest at St. Francis of Assisi in 2004.
As young men consider entering the priesthood, Father Polk recommends they speak with as many priests as possible, take the opportunity to shadow them at work and to truly examine their motives in entering the vocation.
“Take time and check yourself out,” he recommends. “See if the energy and the concerns are still there. This will be important for them in the years to come. But ultimately, I’d tell them the priesthood is such an incredible experience.”

Catholic Review

Catholic Review

The Catholic Review is the official publication of the Archdiocese of Baltimore.