At Holy Faith Preparatory (St Bernadette’s), we have a beautiful practice that we instituted at First Communion 2014. Every week, starting on First Communion Day, a family is asked to take home the chalice for one week, place it in an area of prominence, and pray for an increase in vocations and for those who have already dedicated their lives to Christ and His Holy Church.
The Vocations Cup is also called the Elijah’s Cup. It is always an honour when a family has been allowed the privilege of praying with this sacred cup in their home. A roster is established, all you need to do is let us know which week you would like to have it.
With the cup comes a journal in which all the families who have taken the cup home can write their prayer intentions, their thoughts, their hopes, and whatever else sits on their hearts. Many have shared prayers and drawings as well. It is a blessing to be able to read through the journal and pray along with so many others before us. To know that others are praying devoutly for vocations is heart-warming!
The Elijah cup as a visual reminder of our prayers for more priests and religious. Of course, we know we don’t need the Elijah Cup to pray for our priests, but to hold the cup in our hands that has held Christ’s Blood at Mass, well, it just brings our prayer life to a whole other level!
The Elijah or Vocations Cup is a reminder to pray for our priests and for an increase in vocations. Often this is something many people fail to see as important. Why should we pray about it? The reason we pray is that while God is faithful in His calling, many are not answering the tug they feel deep within.
They feel there will be no support; they worry about what society will say. There is often so many other things going on in their lives that they fail to hear God gently calling them. Whatever the reasons, they may fail to answer the call. Our prayers are said not so that God will call more priests and religious, but so that those whom He is calling will answer!
When we pray for vocations we must be willing to offer our sons and daughters to God’s service. We must encourage our children not only to listen to God’s call, but to act on it as well, if they feel He is tugging in their hearts to become priests and religious. We must expose them to the beauty that service to God and His Church brings not only to those who are called, but to the entire community they serve.
St John Vianney said, “The Priesthood is the love of the heart of Jesus.” Let us instil a great love for the heart of Jesus in our children so that if they hear Christ calling them they will instinctively flee to His Sacred Heart!
With or without the Elijah Cup in our homes, we must continue to pray for holy men and women to answer the call to religious vocation! – Jasmin Mathura, Principal, Holy Faith Preparatory (St Bernadette’s)