You’ve heard that St. Augustine said, "Pray as though everything depended on God. Work as though everything depended on you." This is especially true when speaking of vocation promotion.
The most important part of any good work is prayer, so it is natural when we think of promoting vocations, we think first of prayer. I’m going to encourage you to do a little bit of work to increase prayer for holy vocations.
A Vocation Prayer Campaign is an effective and simple way to do this. While a prayer campaign could be rather complex, it can also be fairly simple. Here is an example of how a parish can run a simple Vocation Prayer Campaign:
Introduce the prayer campaign. This could be during a homily, in the bulletin, with a flyer, etc. Use the best means you have available to introduce, explain, and encourage parishioners to participate.
Pray for an increase in holy vocations during the intercessions at Mass.
Choose a specific person who is discerning a religious or priestly vocation to pray for on a weekly or monthly basis. This should be someone who is in a formation program, such as one of our seminarians or a man or woman from the parish who is in formation in a religious community. Post this on the parish website, in the bulletin, in the vestibule - wherever it will most effectively remind people to pray for this discerner.
Encourage and remind parishioners to pray daily for the chosen discerner, and for all who are discerning religious or priestly vocations in the parish.
If you have perpetual or regular Eucharistic adoration, be sure to promote the prayer campaign with adorers.
There are many other possibilities for promoting your prayer campaign, depending on the resources available in your parish. Some examples are:
Distribute and collect pledge cards from individuals or families;
Forming groups of people who meet regularly to pray for vocations;
Arrange a weekly or monthly rosary before or after one of the Masses to pray for vocations;
Your parish may already be doing some of these things, and that’s great! But consider the benefit of doing just a little more work to help encourage prayer for vocations in your parish. This is one of the most important things we can do for the benefit of our parishes and our diocese, by helping to ensure that we have priests and religious to minister to the needs of the Church into the future!
Thank you for helping promote vocations in the Diocese of Ogdensburg! Your work and prayers are greatly appreciated. ________
If you know a young man who is interested in the priesthood, please encourage him to contact us. Likewise, if you are aware of a young woman or man who is discerning religious life, please send them our way. We'll help connect them with respective religious communities. And of course, let us keep praying for each other and for all holy vocations in the Church.