Diocesan priesthood

Is God calling you to be a diocesan priest?

A diocesan priest in the Archdiocese of Seattle belongs to the body of priests of our archdiocese, which covers the area between Canada and Oregon, from the Cascade Mountains to the Pacific Ocean. A diocesan priest normally serves within the boundaries of his diocese under the authority of his bishop.

A diocesan priest does not make the solemn vows that religious priests (and religious brothers and sisters) make, but he does make promises of obedience and celibacy. A diocesan priest also lives a life of simplicity to better serve the people; however, he is given a living stipend. That is why a diocesan priest is sometimes called a secular priest (from the Latin saeculum, a word that means roughly “this world of time and space in which we live”).

Most diocesan priests serve as pastors of parishes. Some may serve in other specialized ministries as well.

Through the sacrament of holy orders, bishops and priests are given a special role in carrying out Christ’s mission. Those who are seriously considering a vocation to the priesthood are called candidates. Candidates then request to apply to become seminarians, men studying to become priests for the Archdiocese of Seattle.

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Our local Church: The Archdiocese of Seattle

Western Washington is an incredible place to carry out the Church’s mission of the New Evangelization. There is a great need for faithful, energetic and creative priests here. Some parishes are right in the heart of a city, some are rural, some have schools, many minister in multiple languages — the diversity is expansive. The mission continues to grow with more people moving here to our beautiful home every year for work, educational, military and retirement opportunities.

Masses are celebrated on a regular basis in: English, Spanish, Vietnamese, Korean, Samoan, Swahili, Polish, Tagalog, and Latin.

There are unique realities in the Archdiocese of Seattle because Washington state is considered one of the least-churched states in the U.S., meaning most people do not attend any sort of church or consider themselves of a religious or faith tradition. This creates an environment where we are constantly preaching the Gospel and introducing people to the Lord Jesus wherever we are. Our mission is to serve practicing Catholics and also reach out to non-practicing Catholics (or those who do not believe) in unique and creative ways.


NOTE: We do not sponsor or accept anyone from outside the Archdiocese of Seattle. Applicants for seminary will be considered after living in the area on their own for at least two years.


Read about the new Pastoral Appointments:

“I will give you shepherds after my own heart.”

~ Jeremiah 3:15