‘Every person has a vocation’: Archdiocese to focus on young people, celebrate vocations

October 22, 2019

HOUSTON — The Catholic Church in the U.S. will celebrate National Vocations Awareness Week Nov. 3 to 9. This annual event is a special time for parishes to actively foster and pray for a culture of vocations to the priesthood, diaconate and consecrated life.

Pope Francis, in his message for the 2018 World Day of Vocations, emphasized that it is at the loving initiative of God, and by His personal encounter with each of us, that one is called.

“Even amid these troubled times, the mystery of the incarnation reminds us that God continually comes to encounter us. He is God-with-us, who walks along the often dusty paths of our lives. He knows our anxious longing for love and He calls us to joy,” Pope Francis said.

“In the diversity and the uniqueness of each and every vocation, personal and ecclesial, there is a need to listen, discern and live this word that calls to us from on high and, while enabling us to develop our talents, makes us instruments of salvation in the world and guides us to full happiness.”

National Vocations Awareness Week, sponsored by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ (USCCB) Committee on Clergy, Consecrated Life and Vocations, is designed to help promote vocation awareness and to encourage young people to ask the question: “To what vocation in life is God calling me?”

Parish and school communities in Galveston-Houston and across the nation are encouraged to include, during the first full week in November, prayer and special activities that focus on vocation awareness.

“Because every person has a vocation, promoting vocational discernment across the Archdiocese is such a huge task,” said Vocations Director Father Richard McNeillie. “We in the Vocations Office are so grateful to everyone who works in this ministry; we certainly couldn’t do it without them.”

The Archdiocesan Office of Vocations will be visiting the University of St. Thomas, Rice University and the University of Houston to visit with college-aged adults, talk about vocations and answer any questions while meeting them right where they are in their journey of faith.

Observance of Vocation Awareness Week began in 1976 when the U.S. bishops designated the 28th Sunday of the year for the celebration. It was later moved to the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord in January.

More information and resources for National Vocations Awareness Week, including a prayer card and other suggested prayers, visit usccb.org/vocations.

For more local resources, contact the Office of Vocations by calling 713-652-8239 or by visiting houstonvocations.org online. †