Fishers of Men DVD Overview

I. Introduction

This section opens with shots of fishing boats and fishermen casting nets, which introduce the theme of the DVD – ‘Fishers of Men’. We see some early Christians meeting on the beach. One traces an arc in the sand and the other completes to form the early Christian symbol of the icthus, which is how they identified one another in times of persecution. This scene presents an early invitation to ‘come follow me’. This section also shows us several shots of early Christians being martyred, relating the sacrifice involved in answering God’s call.

Priests speak of young people’s desire to respond to the call to be something more than mediocre, to be something remarkable. The other theme that begins to emerge here is the role of priests, as alter Christi, of saying to others, ‘follow me.’ Many scenes in this section are from World Youth Day 2005 in Cologne, which show the great numbers of priests present, and the energy of the youth.

II. Vocations to the Priesthood in this Culture

This section opens with a priest stating, “the vocation to the priesthood is counter-cultural." It speaks of the noise and distractions which impede young people from hearing the call, and of the unique challenges that this generation faces – immorality, violence, etc.

III. Creating a Vocation Culture

The invitation to consider the priestly vocation and discernment are the main themes in this section, along with the need to create an environment where prayerful, silent discernment is possible. One priest speaks of his strong Catholic upbringing, and of wanting to a priest from his youth. Another speaks of having had careers as a baseball player and actor before discerning his priestly vocation (he portrayed an outfielder in the 1989 film Field of Dreams). Several young people at World Youth Day 2005 are interviewed regarding the role and importance of priests in their lives.

IV. John Paul II: ‘Do Not be Afraid’

Pope John Paul II is the focus of the fourth section: how he was a ‘hero’ to young people, and how he presented the world with a model of what the priesthood should be. Seminarians also speak of how the Pope John Paul put his own gifts into the service of the priesthood, of his Marian devotion, and how these provided examples to other priests.

V. Minister of the Mysteries of God

This section focuses on the priest’s role as minister of the sacraments, especially of the Eucharist. A continuity is depicted between the early Christians and today’s priests, who bring Jesus Christ to others. The section also depicts how the priesthood is meaningful in every culture and society, and how the priest is called to minister in various environments and situations – prisons, hospitals, among the poor, etc.

VI. A Vocation Story

This section depicts a scenario which is inspired by a vocation story. A priest is shown responding to an automobile accident, administering the sacrament of anointing to a dying young man. This story underscores the role of the priest in ‘bringing the soul home to God.’ It also shows the importance of the priest’s example. The scene shows a young boy who witnesses the priest’s response at the accident and is inspired to become a priest himself.

Again, we hear priests emphasize the priest’s role in inviting other young men to consider the vocation to priesthood. They speak of the sacrifices involved in the vocation of a priest, their call to ‘lay down their lives’, and of the need for courage and strong character in answering the call.

VII. ‘Fishers of Men’

The closing section depicts an ordination rite, along with the call of Simon and Andrew, while emphasizing the fulfillment that comes from responding to God’s call.

“Come follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.” -- Mark 1:17