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The first time I received the call into the priesthood was when I was five years old. I remember a voice saying to me as I was in Mass: “Be like the man that’s in front of you. That way you can have happiness and give eternal life.” I put these thoughts aside for a few years and never thought about until I was 17 years old.
While I was at a perpetual adoration service, I envisioned myself celebrating one of my sibling's wedding. I didn't pay much attention to it and ignored those thoughts because I didn’t feel as if I was ready to take on a decision and follow the path that God was making for me.
A year later I dreamed that I was at a white chapel, wearing clerics and leading a praise and worship group in prayer. When I woke up, I didn’t know what to do about it. I talked to the priest of my parish at that time and he directed me to Msgr. Scott Friend.
I told Msgr. Friend everything and he told me: “Pablo, I feel as if you already know what God wants you to do, but you’re afraid to do his will.” I was nervous, I wanted to have kids and grow old seeing my children grow up. I talked to Msgr. Friend about it a little more and decided to ignore these thoughts as well.
A little over a year later, I was taking a girl out to dinner. As we were on our way to the restaurant, I heard a voice say to me: “This is not what you want.” A few seconds went by and as we were passing by the church — there is a crucifix on the outside of it — I heard the same voice say to me: “This is what you want.” I then made the decision to join the seminary and told Msgr. Scott about it. God has really been patient with me. I told my family about my decision and everyone was excited about it, which motivated me to tell my parish and all the organizations in which I was a member.
If you wish to contact Pablo Quintana, please e-mail Miriam Gallaher in the Vocations Office or call her at (501) 664-0340. This article was published Sept. 17, 2019. Copyright Diocese of Little Rock. All rights reserved. This article may be copied or redistributed with acknowledgement and permission of the publisher.