Proven Parish Vocation Promotion Projects to Try
As a Parish
- Celebrate Vocation Awareness Week, the first full week of November, with special events and speakers.
- Celebrate World Prayer Day for Vocations, Good Shepherd Sunday (fourth Sunday after Easter), with special weekend liturgies.
- Host a “Vocation Panel.” Have door prizes, refreshments, scavenger hunt and speakers. For more information contact the Vocations Office
- Celebrate feasts of the saints, such as attending Mass on the Feast of St. Therese of the Child Jesus, of Lisieux, the Little Flower, patroness of missionaries and patroness of many vocations.
- Celebrate feasts of the apostles, who were called by the first vocation director, Jesus.
- Pray, especially in the Fall for new recruits and in the Spring for candidates and applicants who are being processed for entrance to seminary for the next year.
- Publish a listing of all the seminarians, with names and seminary addresses. Encourage parishioners to send them cards and letters showing support and prayer without expecting a response from the seminarians, which keeps this activity supportive but not intrusive to their study time. Some parishes feature one seminarian’s name and address in the bulletin each week, to keep this activity continuous.
- Have Middle School Religious Education programs send care packages to seminarians at time of midterms or finals. Invite seminarians to speak at parish programs while home on their breaks from study.
- Organize a Holy Hour for Vocations. See below for a format and readings to use.
- Hang a vocations poster in the church, in the school, in religious education classrooms, in the sacristy and anywhere else that it will be seen by parishioners.
As a Family
- Invite your parish priest, religious priest, brother or sister to your home or at least let them know that they are welcome in your home. Encourage them to visit with you and your family.
- Be aware of current ideas regarding the formation, life and role of priests and religious in the Church. Become familiar with their goals and the manner in which their role evolves into new ministries, especially education and social justice.
- As a family, pray for persons who are in the process of discernment.
- As parents, pray the difficult prayer: that one of your children will be called by God to the priesthood or religious life
- “Adopt” a missionary. Most religious communities have some foreign-mission outreach. Ask for a missionary to correspond with, and learn what his/her life is about…and then share that with others who could begin to consider life as a missionary.
As an Individual
- Be familiar with the vocations web page: www.vocations-syracuse.org
- Promise your own daily prayer for an increase of vocations to our diocese.
- Encourage people 16 to 40 years of age (who exhibit the qualities and virtues you have admired in priests and religious who have been an influence in your life) to consider a religious or priestly calling from God. Personal invitation can be the inspiration someone needs to contact a vocation director for further information and discernment.
- “Adopt” a retired priest or brother or sister. They will appreciate the mail you send them, and you can profit from their advice. Invite him/her to conversation with one or two of your prospects, the people you are personally inviting to consider religious life or priesthood.
- Visit a religious book store and familiarize yourself with what is available in books and tapes and videos on religious topics, lives of the saints, liturgy, and so forth. These make great gifts, which encourage youth and young adults to share their faith at home and to reflect on the possibility of making that sharing a life career.
- Adopt a missionary. Most religious communities have some foreign-mission outreach. Ask for a missionary to correspond with, and learn what his/her life is about… and then share that with others who could begin to consider life as a missionary.
Check out what the US Conference of Catholic Bishops recommends! Click here