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Praying for vocations


Prayer and adoration of Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament have been urged by Pope Francis for the 51st World Day of Prayer for Vocations this Sunday, May 11, also known as Good Shepherd Sunday.

WHEN Catholics worldwide pray together for vocations, the number of priests, religious, married couples and intentional singles increases.

Brisbane vocations director Fr Morgan Batt said he always noticed an increase in inquiries to the priesthood when the community prayed specifically for vocations.

“I believe that when we pray, vocations increase,” he said. “It’s quite extraordinary.”

Parishes and communities in the archdiocese are invited to join in the 51st World Day of Prayer for Vocations this Sunday, May 11, also known as Good Shepherd Sunday.

In his message for the World Day of Prayer for Vocations, Pope Francis asked bishops, priests, religious, Christian communities and families to “stake your lives on noble ideals”.

He said they must also “orient vocational pastoral planning in this direction, by accompanying young people on pathways of holiness which, because they are personal, call for a genuine training in holiness capable of being adapted to every person’s need”.

Over the next four years, Vocation Brisbane will include 60-second clips on priesthood, consecrated religious, married, and the single life as part of their annual resources for the World Day of Prayer for Vocations.

“This year we’ve gone out to do a video clip of 60 seconds in the life of a priest because multimedia form is important,” Fr Batt said.

Mass, Eucharistic Adoration, praying a Rosary for vocations, daily Angelus, and using the Brisbane Vocation prayer cards were also essential to increasing vocations, Fr Batt said.

Joining in the prayers is Carmelite Sister Moira Kelly and the entire community of Sisters from the Ormiston Monastery.

Sr Moira said all Catholics should be praying for vocations.

“We all need to be praying for vocations to the priesthood and religious life because they are essential to the life of the Church,” Sr Moira said. “God is calling people today but for some reason they cannot hear the call.

“We need to pray for that they will be touched and hear the call and respond in whatever way God is asking of them.”

Keiran and Kate Hobbs are mentors in Brisbane-based marriage education program Ministry to the Newly Married.

The couple said the best way to increase vocations, especially to married life, was the Mass.

“The strongest cell in society is the family, and the strongest family is one that prays together at the altar,” they said.

Albany Creek parishioner Teresa Gasparin, 24, is hoping the prayers from the World Day of Prayer for Vocations will shed some light on her own vocation.

“I’m still waiting for the call,” she said.

To avoid becoming impatient and worried about her vocation, Miss Gasparin makes prayer a priority.

“I recently went on a silent retreat that taught me that listening is really important.

It’s drawn me closer to finding vocation and detaching myself from myself.”

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