This Sunday, 17th April, is  the World Day of Prayer for Vocations. We remember, as reflected in the readings at Mass, that Jesus Christ himself is the ‘Good Shepherd’, and we pray that he may send more shepherds to tend to his flock, as priests and deacons. The purpose of the World Day of Prayer for Vocations is to publically fulfil the Lord’s instruction to, “Pray the Lord of the harvest to send labourers into his harvest” (Mt 9:38; Lk 10:2). As a climax to a prayer that is continually offered throughout the Church, it affirms the primacy of faith and grace in all that concerns vocations to the priesthood and to the consecrated life.  While appreciating all vocations, the Church concentrates its attention this day on vocations to the ordained ministries(priesthood and diaconate), to the Religious life in all its forms (male and female, contemplative and apostolic), to societies of apostolic life, to secular institutes in their diversity of services and membership, and to the missionary life, in the particular sense of mission “ad gentes”.

A Prayer for Vocations

Almighty and eternal God,
in your unfailing love you provide
ministers for your Church.
We pray for those whom you call
to serve the Church in East Anglia as priests and Deacons.
Inspire in them a generous response.
Grant them courage and vision to serve your people
May their lives and service call your
people to respond to the presence
of your Spirit among us
that, faithful to the Gospel and
hope of Jesus the Christ, we may:
announce glad tidings to the poor
proclaim liberty to captives,
set prisoners free
and renew the face of the earth.

Vocations Sunday (2)