-Begin a Holy Hour, prayer, or personal reflection to promote Church vocations in your parish
-Ask your pastor if he would include an intercession for Church vocations
-Join Archbishop Nienstedt and people throughout the archdiocese in fasting from meat on Fridays for the intention of more vocations to the priesthood. As the Archbishop says, “it adds a sense of urgency to our prayers” for vocations.
-Promote Team Vianney (for high school boys at St. John Vianney College Seminary) and Theotokos (for high school girls on the St. Thomas campus) for faith formation on the four thursday evenings that are offered during the school year.
-Encourage and support young people in starting a “Grill a Priest” or “Theology on Tap” in the parish with neighboring parishes
-Promote teen Holy Hours during Advent and Lent. Encourage them to bring their problems to Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament.
-Instigate a game each year of teens vs. their parents (basketball, volleyball, bowling, card games, etc.), sell tickets as a fund raiser for different Religious Orders or the Order’s work, such as the local Missionaries of Charity. Teens can take proceeds to the Order, meet them, see their work, hear about their life. Can be done with younger children, too.
-Place notices in your parish bulletin of upcoming events of active Young Adults parish clubs around the archdiocese.
-Interest youth in supplying material for parish Web site.
-Hold youth competitions prior to or during your parish festival, with the winners performing at the festival and receiving a prize. (Some performance ideas: sing a religious song or hymn, or recite a story of a saint, a Catholic poem, prayer, or other writing.)
-Help young adults begin a local Frassati Society chapter. Information about the Society online at www.frassati.org.
-Construct & paint “cut-outs” of a priest, a Sister, a Brother, showing clerical garb, vestments, and Religious habits, but with the “faces” cut out so that children can stand behind and have their picture taken to show them as a priest or Religious (Serran idea). Charge a small fee for the cost of each instant Polaroid or computer printed photo and donate any profits to a Religious Community.
Easier yet, borrow the North Minneapolis Serran's priest and Sister cut-outs for a weekend—call the Vocation Office for contact information.
-Arrange an “On the Road” visit to a monastery, convent, friary, motherhouse, or shrine once a summer for young people and parents or youth minister or priest.
-Organize a Hall of Fame in the parish hall to feature the photographs and names of people from the parish who have chosen Church vocations (Serran idea).
- Request a copy of “Fishers of Men” (if your parish doesn’t have one) and ''A Vocation Story'' for your parish’s use. “Fishers of Men” is a fast-paced, 18-minute DVD produced by Grassroots Films that shows many of the facets of a priest’s daily life. “A Vocation Story” is a compelling 14-minute film through the eyes of a young woman coming to understand her vocation despite her fears of missing the romantic parts of life. Nevertheless, she senses that the Lord may have another plan for her, and she doesn't want to miss it. It is produced by the Handmaids of the Heart of Jesus (available through the Vocation Office firstname.lastname@example.org).
Prayers of the Faithful Intercessions for Vocations
-For all parents who by prayer and example nourish the call of God in each of their children, we pray to the Lord.
-For our newly ordained priests, in thanksgiving for their ordination and for a fruitful first year of service in our archdiocese, we pray to the Lord.
-For those who will soon be ordained to the priesthood and transitional diaconate, that God’s grace and blessings be generously poured out upon them, we pray to the Lord.
-That all Christians recognize, accept, and follow their threefold calling from God: to holiness, to discipleship of Jesus, and to self-realization in the Lord, we pray to the Lord.
-For all who support the work of vocation promotion through their prayers, suffering, and good works, we pray to the Lord.
-That the priests of our archdiocese, through their promises of celibacy and obedience to our archbishop, and their lives of service in our parishes, may present a strong model of the priesthood today, we pray to the Lord.
-That priests and Religious give clear witness to the message of the Gospel, we pray to the Lord.
-For all baptized persons who are preparing to make permanent commitment through vows, in marriage, holy orders, or in religious life, we pray to the Lord.
-That all permanent deacons, and their families, will be blessed for their gift of generous service to the People of God, we pray to the Lord.
-For our parish, that we continue to actively invite men and women in our midst to share their gifts and energy with our Church, we pray to the Lord.
-For all our seminarians preparing for priestly service in our archdiocese, that they may persevere in their studies and preparation for ministry, and that their families will be blessed, we pray to the Lord.
-For all the Religious of our archdiocese—Sisters, Brothers, priests—that they may be blessed in their life of consecration to the Lord and to his Church, we pray to the Lord.
-For greater devotion to Mary, and that young people will look to her as a model of persons chosen by God for a special work on behalf of the Kingdom of God on earth, we pray to the Lord.
-For greater devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, especially in homes and families, for the extension of the Kingdom of God on earth, we pray to the Lord.
-For all priests and Religious who celebrate jubilees this year, that God will bless them graciously, we pray to the Lord.
-For those who will receive the Holy Eucharist for the first time, that they will always know the companionship of Jesus and Mary in their lives, we pray to the Lord.
-That parents, by their lives and example, may encourage Church vocations among their children, we pray to the Lord.
-For Christian families, the source of religious vocations, that they may be prompted to encourage young people to rejoice in doing God’s will, we pray to the Lord.
-For our young people, that they may find a joyful faith in their families, and encouragement to respond to a life of ministry and service, we pray to the Lord.
-For all candidates for priesthood in our archdiocese, that they may have the courage of their convictions and the generosity to act upon them, we pray to the Lord.
-For all priests, deacons, Religious men and women, and all lay ministers who serve our Church—and for those who are struggling to answer the call they are experiencing at this time, we pray to the Lord.
-For the Knights of Columbus within our archdiocese, that they may be blessed for the assistance they give our bishops, seminarians, and vocation-promotion efforts of our archdiocese, we pray to the Lord.
-For all parishioners who have made a commitment to pray intensely for vocations, that their intercessory prayer for an increase of candidates for priesthood in our archdiocese will be fruitful for the Church and they will be blessed for their efforts, we pray to the Lord.
-That this year might be a time of renewal for the Church and that many people will follow their call from God to assist in the work of evangelization, we pray to the Lord.
-That all men and women might discern how God calls them to serve the people, we pray to the Lord.
-That God’s love might inspire all men and women to follow Christ’s footsteps more closely, we pray to the Lord.
Vocation and Prayer magazine January-March 2010