Vocations Awareness Week 2016
National Vocations Awareness Week (NVAW) provides an opportunity for all Australian dioceses, parishes, schools, religious communities, youth and campus ministers, and other Catholic organisations, to focus at the same time on the 'call to holiness' (i.e. the Christian Vocation) that arises from our Baptism, and thus to further foster a Vocations Culture across Australia.
The week is held over two weekends. The first weekend focuses on Single and Married vocations; the second on Consecrated Religious Life and the Priesthood.
Vocations in the Diocese of Bathurst
Father Carl Mackander is the Vocations Director for the Diocese of Bathurst and Father Reynold Jaboneta is the Assistant Director.
You can find more information on the Vocations website - http://www.bathurstvocations.org.au/
Prayer For Vocations
Father, help all people to know their vocation in life, and assist them to prepare for it. For your glory, and for the service of your people, call many to be Priests and Religious. Give those whom you call the grace to respond generously and persevere faithfully.
Mary, Mother of the Church, show your care for the body of Christ, encourage many vocations to the priesthood and religious life.
Jesus began his ministry in Galilee, northwest of Lake Galilee. Peter, Andrew and Matthew were from Capernaum. In Luke's Gospel, there is an indication that Jesus had a home there, also. James, John, Philip and Nathaniel were from nearby villages.
Although we don't know much about most of the disciples, we know that when Jesus called Peter, he was a married man with a family and a fishing business with his brother Andrew. Matthew was the tax collector at a key post on the trade route from Syria to Egypt.
All of the disciples left families, homes, social obligations and business commitments when they chose to follow Jesus. Having already "emptied himself of glory," as Paul wrote to the Philippians, Jesus had also emptied himself of his home and possessions. When a lawyer came to Jesus saying, "Teacher, I will follow you wherever you go," Jesus knew the cost of following. "I have nowhere to put my head," he said.
WHAT are YOU willing to give up to follow Jesus?
"Let the dead bury their own dead," Jesus told another would-be-disciple. Maybe Jesus isn't calling us away from things so much as he is calling us away from deadening attitudes and life-robbing assumptions. "I'm too young, or old, or poor." Or maybe it's "women can't..., or men must...., or they always...".
When we stop long enough to listen to God, to hear his voice in our darkness, we know deep down, it is our own "death grip" that holds us back.
Let us open our hearts. Let go and let God!