Monday, 30 June 2008


For those of you who have commented on our blog, I haven't been able to respond to them for some reason (some problem with my email address), but I remember one lady, Mrs. Pea, asking how she and her family could encourage vocations. This was the topic of the homily at a First Mass I was at on Saturday (when a newly ordained priest celebrates his first Mass, and invites another priest to give the homily). The first thing I think is to foster vocational awareness in the home; make it known to your children that there are any number of vocations that God could be calling them to, and that you would be delighted to see them become a priest or religious as much as you would be to see them married. In your own parish, you could ask an individual who you think would be a good priest or religious if they have ever considered such a vocation. The thing is, they can't discern a vocation if they haven't been introduced to the possibilities, and for most people priesthood and religious life isn't even a blip on their radar screen. The other thing is, that even if they have considered it, they are not likely to do anything about it unless they receive some encouragement from outside. So it's up to us!

As for supporting priests and seminarians, the best thing is to pray constantly for them! I think it's easy to forget that they need just as many prayers as everyone else, maybe more, to stay on the straight and narrow. Also, you can encourage them just by showing that you appreciate what they do; in East Anglia priests often have to slog it out on their own and probably don't always realise the extent to which their ministry is needed and appreciated. When they meet with a kind word or a thank you I am sure they will feel that all the difficulties they undergo are worth it! I wonder if anyone else has ideas about how to effectively encourage and support vocations?

No comments: