• Paschal

Good Shepherd Sunday : Vocations Sunday

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Sunday 3rd May is a day set aside by the Church to focus on ‘Vocation’.

In the context of the current Liturgy of the Easter Season, this is entirely appropriate: ‘The Acts of the Apostles’ chronicle the first steps of the Church’s journey following the events of Easter, of the calling of the disciples; the earliest occasions where the message of Christ spreads to new members of the young Church. Of all the books of the New Testament, it could be said to be ‘our story’. The Gospel of this Sunday is of Christ as shepherd, calling his sheep to follow.

A message from Pope Francis to each of us:

Our Diocesan Vocations team have gathered a number of resources to help us focus on ‘Vocation’ for this day:

‘Vocation’? : a good place to start! This might be a calling to the ordained ministry (Priest, Diaconate); it might be a calling to the religious life, which can take many forms, contemplative or apostolic, male or female (Religious Sister or Brother; Eremetical). We might feel a calling to societies of apostolic life, to secular institutes (which can be diverse of service and membership), or to the missionary life.

  1. Watch the following YouTube streams:

2. We are invited to pray the World Prayer for Vocations:

“Holy Spirit stir within us the passion to promote vocations to the consecrated life, societies of apostolic life, diocesan priesthood, and permanent diaconate.

Inspire us daily to respond to Your call with boundless compassion, abundant generosity, and radical availability. Help us to remember our own baptismal call to rouse us to invite the next generation to hear and respond to Your call. Inspire parents, families, and lay ecclesial ministers to begin a conversation with young Catholics to consider a how they will live lives of holiness and sacred service. Nudge inquirers and motivate discerners to learn more about monastic life, apostolic life, missionaries, cloistered contemplative life.

Ignite our Church with the confident humility that there is an urgent need for religious sisters, brothers, deacons, and priests to live in solidarity with those who are poor, neglected, and marginalized.

Disrupt our comfortable lives and complacent attitudes with new ideas to respond courageously and creativity with a daily ‘YES!’ Amen.”

3. We are invited to mark each Thursday as a day of prayer for Vocations.

Whilst the Church encourages us to focus on a life of service and prayer through this day’s reflections, it recognises that we each have a Vocation, a calling within us, to use our skills and talents to the best effect in our lives. Its prayer for us is, equally, that we each may find this calling and with it, the satisfaction doing so brings to our lives and that this sits side by side with our Baptism call to be full members of the Christian family.

“Lord, send labourers into your harvest”