Promoting vocation and developing a Culture of Vocation
"Every member of the Church, excluding no-one, has the grace and the responsibility of caring for vocations"
-In Verbo Tuo
-In Verbo Tuo
Response of the whole Christian community
Even though pastoral strategies and the work of the Vocations Office are important, we cannot forget that the responsibility for fostering a culture of vocation in fact falls upon the whole community of the faithful. There is a kind of inner logic to the general vocational character of human life that urges all Christians in turn to nurture the respective vocations of their brothers and sisters.
The emphasis on the importance of fostering a culture of vocation reflects the teaching of the Second Vatican Council, which stated:
“The duty of fostering vocations pertains to the whole Christian community, which should exercise it above all by a fully Christian life. The principal contributors to this are the families… and the parishes in whose rich life the young people take part… All priests especially are to manifest an apostolic zeal in fostering vocations…”
This wide-ranging responsibility is even enshrined in the law of the Church. The Code of Canon Law states:
“The duty of fostering vocations rests with the entire Christian community so that the needs of the sacred ministry in the universal Church are provided for sufficiently. This duty especially binds Christian families, educators, and, in a special way, priests, particularly pastors.”
“There is an urgent need, especially nowadays, for a more widespread and deeply felt conviction that all the members of the Church, without exception, have the grace and responsibility to look after vocations. The Second Vatican Council was quite explicit in this regard… A very special responsibility falls upon the Christian family.”
The ‘golden triangle’ of parish-family-school is a vital buttress in the defence of faith in our society. They also have a key role in promoting a ‘culture of peace’, a ‘culture of life’, and a ‘culture of vocation’, which are intrinsically linked. Their intimate connection is rooted in the Catholic vision of what it means to be human. As every person has a transcendent dimension to their lives, namely that they come from God, are called by God, and will return to God, so this has practical and concrete consequences for how people live in their families, parishes and schools, and also how they live in the world at large.
Below are various links and signposts. These links may provide advice on how you can get involved. They also provide valuable ideas and resources to guide and support you whether you are a priest or religious, an educator, a parent, grandparent or discerner.
There's something for everyone! Take a look.