Celebrate Vocations Awareness Week!

January 13-19 the USCCB is sponsoring its annual “National Vocation Awareness Week“. While the week specifically promotes vocations to the religious life, having a proper understanding of vocation is essential even for those of us not called to religious life. Here is an excellent article from a recent issue of Lay Witness on the basics of “vocation.” […]

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Counting Collars

Between the recent CARA study on newly professed women religious and data from the Statistical Yearbook of the Church, there seems to be strong indications of positive growth of vocations in the universal Church. Zenit reports a steady increase in priestly vocations over the past decade, with a 4% increase of diocesan priests and the number of religious […]

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New articles at CUF.org

A new issue of Lay Witness means new online articles (and a new quiz!) too. Our Summer Vocation by Regis J. Flaherty “Our vocations require from us a daily commitment. Each and every day we have the opportunity and obligation to again say ‘yes’ to God and choose to embrace the vocation that He has […]

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New at CUF.org

With the new issue of Lay Witness on its way to mailboxes, we also have some new web exclusive articles posted. Priestly Vocations by Fr. Richard Neilson “Prietly vocations are a proof of and, at the same time, a condition of the vitality of the Church.” Fr. Neilson looks at three points concerning the vocation […]

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Champions in Black and White

The Diocese of Pittsburgh has put together a pretty snazzy vocations Web site, pghpriest.com. They definitely know their audience. Case in point: Knowing that most Pittsburghers are die-hard Steelers fans, the tagline at the bottom of the home page reads, “In a city that bleeds black and gold, we need champions to wear the black […]

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Living Icons

This past weekend ZENIT published a most uplifting interview with Sr. Catherine Marie Hopkins of the Nashville Dominicans. The entire interview, worth reading in full, may be viewed here.  What follows is an excerpt of the interview, in which Sister responds to a question regarding the keys to fostering vocations. Her answer is solid and […]

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Will Shields and the Objective Superiority of Consecrated Life

As Pope John Paul II affirmed in his 1996 apostolic exhortation Vita Consecrata (Consecrated Life), “Christian tradition has always spoken of the objective superiority of the consecrated life” (no. 18). In today’s “tyranny of relativism,” there is a built-in suspicion of any and all claims to objective truth. But in this particular case, even some faithful […]

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Vocation Awareness

I was completing my fourth year of seminary, only a year away from the diaconate, with ordination to the priesthood to follow shortly thereafter. On the outside, everything seemed fine. I was a “model” seminarian, and by all accounts I was right on track for ordination. On the inside, however, I was in turmoil. Something seemed […]

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Right Here, Right Now

I spent a couple wonderful years with a religious community in the 1980s as I was discerning a possible vocation to the priesthood and religious life. One day, they brought in a well-known retreat master to give the two dozen or so seminarians a day of recollection. The first words of the priest to begin […]

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