For Responses to God's Call
Who then will offer willingly, consecrating himself today to the Lord?
Let us pray that the most holy mysteries of the risen Christ and of the Spirit, the Paraclete, may enlighten many generous people, ready to serve the Church with greater readiness. Let us pray for the pastors and their collaborators, that they may find the right words in putting before the faithful the message of the priestly and consecrated life. Let us pray that in all parts of the Church the faithful may believe with renewed fervor in the Gospel ideal of the priest completely dedicated to the building up of the Kingdom of God: and let us pray that they support such vocations with generosity.
Let us pray for the young people, to whom the Lord extends His invitation to follow Him more closely, that they may not be drawn away by the things of this world, but may open their hearts to the loving voice that is calling them. Let us pray that they may feel capable of dedicating themselves for their whole lives, "with undivided heart," to Christ, the Church, and souls. Let us pray that they may believe that grace gives them the strength to make this gift, and that they may see the beauty and greatness of priestly, religious, and missionary life.
Let us pray for families, that they may succeed in creating a Christian environment favorable to the important religious choices of their children. And at the same time with all our hearts let us thank the Lord that in these recent years, in many parts of the world, many young and not so young people are responding in growing numbers to the divine call.
Let us pray that all priests and religious may be an example and an encouragement to those who have been called, by their availability and humble readiness, to accept the gifts of the Holy Spirit and to transmit to others the fruits of love and peace, to give them that certainty of faith from which derive the profound understanding of meaning of human existence and the capacity to introduce moral order into the life of individuals and of the human setting.
[LOsservatore Romano, 1-14-80]