It was felt at a national level within Scotland that the Vocations Conversation had gone quiet over recent years. The Vocations Directors of Scotland undertook to bring vocations back onto the agenda within the parishes; to this end our parishes have adopted the Vocations Cross Programme.
The Vocations Cross Programme involves a different family/person each week taking home from Sunday Mass the Vocations Box. The Vocations Box contains a Crucifix, a small vase for flowers, a candle holder, a small white table cloth and a selection of Vocations Prayers. The prayer material has been devised to suite the needs of most people in the parishes: there are General Christian Vocation Prayers; Specific Prayers for Priests, Deacons and Religious; Family Vocations Prayers; Young People’s Prayer for Discerning their Vocation; Sick Person’s Prayer for Priestly and Religious Vocations, and; Senior Citizen’s Prayer for Religious and Priestly Vocations. The boxes help the parish to sustain prayer for vocations throughout the year in a systematic way. They also help to keep the need for vocations, and prayer for vocations, at the forefront of the worshiping community’s mind.
The prayer boxes are brought down in the procession of gifts and placed near the altar. Some weeks at the end of Mass the person or family who are to use the Box for the next week are called forward and process out of the Church with the box. This helps to remind everyone, including those not involved in the programme, the need for prayer for vocations.
The feedback from the boxes has been very positive ranging from the young mother who commented that it was an ideal way to help the family to pray together, whilst encouraging her children to think about where God was calling them. Another member of the parish took the initiative to invite round a group of fellow parishioners. So, one evening during his week with the Vocations Box a group of us gather together and pray for Vocations. Needless to say we end with a spot of Table Fellowship!
Please pray for vocations. The harvest is rich but the labourers are few.
If you are interested in learning a bit more about what God’s calling you to in your life why not check out some of these links.