SignaturesJosé María Calderón

Vocational spring

The Day of Prayer for Native Vocations unites the Church's petition and thanksgiving for those young people in Asia and Africa who respond to God's call and need financial support to carry out their studies and pastoral work.

April 11, 2021-Reading time: 2 minutes

For many years now, I don't know how many, the months of March and April have been months in which we have been invited to pray for vocations. I am sure that the feast of St. Joseph has influenced this... 

It is also at this time, in the springtime, that the Church presents us with a precious reality: the emergence of numerous vocations to the priesthood and consecrated life in Africa, America and Asia. 

Yes, in Europe we are dry and we must pray and we must ask, because the fact that there are or are not vocations is not a mere anecdote; it is really a snapshot of the spiritual situation of our Church in these places.

On the other hand, in those countries that we call mission countries, the reality is quite different: the novitiates and seminaries show a precious vitality. Many young people are generously considering giving themselves to God and to the Church, and it is a great gift to be able to share with them a time of prayer, a moment of conversation, the Eucharist!

Thanks to the Holy See, through the Pontifical Missionary Work of St. Peter the ApostleIn this way, these novitiates and seminaries can be opened every day and can be provided with trained teachers, theological libraries and means of support, so that these vocations are not lost, as Pope St. John Paul II asked.

Many priests and many Christians collaborate with formation scholarships so that one of these young people can do his formation studies without anguish. Is there anything more beautiful than knowing that a young man, a young woman is, in some mission country, praying for me, because I have sponsored him in his studies?

This is called feeling the weight and responsibility of the Church, this is called helping the Pope so that the Church in mission lands grows and develops. 

In order to promote this awareness, in Spain we will celebrate on April 25, the Day of Native Vocations, so that everyone, each one in his concrete situation, knows that we can/should be an active part in the strengthening of the mission territories and their vocations. 

The motto chosen for the 2021 World Youth Day was given to us by Pope Francis: For whom are you?...for God, for the Church, for my brothers! May none of them be lost for lack of means!

The authorJosé María Calderón

Director of Pontifical Mission Societies (PMS) Spain

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