25 Jul 2017
2017 National Vocations Awareness Week
Once again this year throughout Australia National Vocation Awareness Week is celebrated over the first two weekends in August from August 6-13. We are all encouraged to pray with confidence that the Lord of the harvest will send much needed labourers into his harvest.
All are called and this vocation from God is uniquely personal, but always in the context of the community of faith. No-one is called to walk alone. We are called from within families and communities, precisely to serve others in the community as God’s instruments. The call of God comes to us in and through the faithfulness of others.
The week consciously encompasses two weekends so that on the first weekend at Sunday Masses we highlight the unique call or vocation of every Baptised Christian to holiness in life and to a mission of witnessing God’s love in our world. It’s always important when speaking of vocations to start with the vocation of each Baptised Christian.
It’s then on the second weekend that we specify the prime Baptismal call and speak of the call to Marriage and Family Life, the Single Life, the call to Lay Ecclesial Ministry in the Church, the Consecrated Life of Sisters and Brothers, the Diaconate and the Priesthood. And whilst praying for all vocations we particular pray for an increase in the vocations of Religious Sisters and Brothers, Deacons and Priests.
I invite parish communities to wholeheartedly take up the call to promote vocations and pray for vocations during this week. Write about vocations in your parish newsletter, plan your Sunday Liturgies around the theme of vocations, include petitions in the Universal Prayer for vocations, invite priests, deacons and religious to share their vocation stories, pray the diocesan vocations prayer at the end of the Universal Prayer and celebrate a Holy Hour before the Blessed Sacrament for vocations. These are just a few ideas of what can be done.
The Archdiocese currently has three seminarians, two at Corpus Christi College in Melbourne and another at Pope St John XXIII Seminary in Boston, USA. There are also a number discerning their vocation. As we rejoice in God’s call to us, let us confidently encourage our young people to hear and respond to the unique call of God to them.
Your brother in Christ, Fr Dean Marin, Director of Vocations