Wednesday, 14 March 2018

Vocations to priestly and religious life

Vocations to priestly and religious life in the West are on the decline for decades.  Most congregations are either winding up or on the verge of closing down.  The same is the case for many Parishes.  Either merged or closed down altogether.  Here in this diocese of Arundel and Brighton, recently three parishes were merged or rather were being catered to by two priests.  And this is not a solitary case.

The Salesian province of Great Britain too has shrunk very much in numbers.  Naturally many would like to see more join the Salesians and continue the good work carried out by so many in former years.  However, the scenario at large has changed much.  So has the Church and the congregation too.  The recurrent questions one has to come face to face in the present times is: What next? How can we get vocations?  Very many ask and seek to find an answer to the question, 'Why are people not joining us anymore?'  However, I think prior to that question we Salesians need to ask ourselves, "Why is it that we want people to join us to become Salesians?"

If we have nothing distinctive or special or challenging to offer, why would any youngster want to join us?  If all that we presently do can be done without professing the vows or getting ordained, why then opt for priestly or religious life?  Where and how does God feature in our life, in our invitation to young people to join us?  If we have a relevant answer to that question then perhaps we can move to the next question of 'What more can we do to have young people join us?'

A proper understanding of 'consecration' will certainly do us a lot of good.  But am not sure if consecrated life is to be understood or interpreted as a counter-witness to the 'social' life. 

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...