“Vocations is first and foremost about how God is speaking to our souls.” These words, spoken by then Bishop Jason Gordon of Bridgetown, at the 2017 AEC Vocations Conference, resonated deeply. He encouraged the development of a “culture of vocations” among the “whole people of God”, as the “seeds of discipleship” need to be sown in order to reap the harvest of vocations.
The family is the primary building block through which the whole people of God are formed. It provides the soil in which these seeds are nurtured. Encouraging a culture of LOVE in our homes gifts our children with the capacity to discern God’s voice speaking into their souls.
A vocation is a ‘call’ from God to serve. Although each person is called to holiness, our ‘secondary vocation’ varies. While some are called into priesthood, God invites others into religious life, marriage, or living a consecrated single life in Christ. He desires our free and loving ‘yes’ to His call, and commitment to faithfully live out this response.
Teach our youth to converse with God through ensuring regular Mass attendance and receipt of the sacraments, encouraging active prayer lives and the practice of Adoration. Urge them to ask the Lord to reveal His desired vocation for them and to LISTEN for His response.
Nurture in our youth the conviction that there is honour in OFFERING our lives to God by becoming His hands and feet, His eyes and ears, in return for His self-offering love for us.
Follow Abraham’s example (Gen 2:1–19) by offering our children back to God in obedient service, through supporting their acceptance of His call. We imitate our Blessed Mother’s example by directing them to ‘do whatever he tells you’ (Jn 2:5).
Gift our children with the freedom to participate in Christ’s VISION of their VOCATION by standing with them as they freely join their VOICES with His. It is our LOVE for God that enables us, like St Joseph (Mt 1:24), to set aside our own dreams for them. ENCOURAGE them to speak out and seek out the vocation that God has laid on their hearts.
When we speak and live out our Faith, even in our blessedness and brokenness, and trust God to match our children with the best-suited vocation that will lead them to holiness, we will build a ‘culture of vocations’ within our families, from which a rich harvest will be gathered. – Archdiocesan Vocations Recruitment Team