This Saturday, 50 pilgrims will travel to Lough Derg in the Diocese of Clogher to pray for vocations to the priesthood in Ireland. This pilgrimage is an initiative of the Council for Vocations as part of the Year for Vocation to the Diocesan Priesthood, which is currently taking place across the island of Ireland on the theme ‘Take the Risk for Christ’ (‘You have not chosen me, but I have chosen you’ John 15:16). The Year for Vocation involves various awareness raising initiatives around the country and will conclude on Good Shepherd Sunday 2024.
On Sunday 20 August, Bishop Alphonsus Cullinan, Chair of the Council for Vocations, ordained Father Mark O’Farrell to the priesthood for the Diocese of Waterford and Lismore. During his homily, Bishop Cullinan said, “In Ireland, during this year for vocations to the diocesan priesthood, we are encouraged to:
- Take the Risk for Christ
- To build up His Kingdom, a Kingdom of justice and integrity, where humanity finds salvation because we are all sinners.
“And so I turn to you Mark and say: this is your task to join with your brother priests, deacons and people to build up God’s Kingdom today. And of course to do so with joy!
“God gives gifts. And never takes them back. God gives you today the gift of ordination to the priesthood, through His Church:
- To show mercy to all mankind
- To link heaven and earth
- To fish with Jesus Christ
“Not to preserve the past but, rather, to allow Christ to enter in, to step into our boat and cast the net again for the people of today. May you have an eagerness to walk with Christ.”
For information about vocations, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org All are invited to include in their prayers the following prayer to encourage vocations (source: the National Vocations Office of the Bishops’ Conference):
Prayer for Vocations
Heavenly Father, we ask you to send labourers into your harvest and to bless all who strive to listen to your voice.
Inspire, in the hearts of men and women,
vocations to the priesthood, diaconate and
Bless our families with a spirit of generosity,
so that those whom you call have the courage
to give themselves to your Church in faith.
Send workers into Your great harvest
so that the Gospel is preached,
the poor are served with love,
the suffering are comforted,
and Your people are strengthened by the sacraments.
We ask this through Jesus Christ, our Lord.