20 Apr 2013

21st April 2013 - 4th Sunday of Easter - Day of Prayer for Vocations (Good Shepherd Sunday)

This week we mark Vocation Sunday when the universal church prays for labourers to be sent into the vineyard of the Lord. We have a few thoughts on last weeks celebration for the diocese in the ordination of our new bishop as well as our regular reflection on the gospel of the day as well as some liturgical odds and ends.

This weeks programme podcast is available HERE.

Ordination of Bishop Brendan Leahy

Please check our our various posts, links and photos for the ordination of Limerick's new bishop:

Limerick Diocesan website
Limerick Leader
The Irish Catholic

"I now feel I am a Limerick man! Limerick is beautiful. I’ll have to start wearing the Limerick colours! I am proud to be bishop of this great diocese with such an ancient history. As a diocese we want to do our part to make all of Limerick even greater, as I believe and hope we do, day in, day out, in countless communities of faith and love in parishes, religious orders, communities and movements, schools, hospitals and social initiatives. In so many ways, people are replying positively to Jesus’ question: “do you love me?” Today let’s renew our love of him even more; let’s bridge to make Limerick even more beautiful, so that others will come and see Jesus living among us.”

One of the great things about the celebration was the music and song through out the celebration and it is not for nothing that Shannon-siders have a reputation for music and singing! The recessional hymn was Now Thank We all Our God and while we may not have been up to the standard of the Morman Tabernacle Choir below, it will give you some idea of the celebration.

Day of Prayer for Vocations - "Vocations as a sign of hope founded in faith"
Today is the day set aside to pray for vocations. On SS102fm that vocation isnt just for priesthood and religious life as we all have a specific vocation arising out of our baptism. but this day is set aside as a particular day of prayer for those vocations. Below are excerpts of the text of the popes message for Vocations Sunday.

"....this day of worldwide prayer to God the Father, asking him to continue to send workers for his Church (cf. Mt 9:38).....The problem of having a sufficient number of priests is the precise and inescapable indicator of the vitality of faith and love of individual parish and diocesan communities, and the evidence of the moral health of Christian families. Wherever numerous vocations to the priesthood and consecrated life are to be found, that is where people are living the Gospel with generosity”
Hope is the expectation of something positive in the future, yet at the same time it must sustain our present existence, which is often marked by dissatisfaction and failures. On what is our hope founded?

At every moment, especially the most difficult ones, the Lord’s faithfulness is always the authentic driving force of salvation history....

God never abandons us and he remains true to his word. For that reason, in every situation, whether positive or negative, we can nourish a firm hope and pray with the psalmist: “Only in God can my soul find rest; my hope comes from him” (Ps 62:6)

......what exactly is God’s faithfulness, to which we adhere with unwavering hope? It is his love!....this love, fully manifested in Jesus Christ, engages with our existence and demands a response in terms of what each individual wants to do with his or her life, and what he or she is prepared to offer in order to live it to the full. The love of God sometimes follows paths one could never have imagined, but it always reaches those who are willing to be found.....This deep, demanding love, which penetrates well below the surface, gives us courage; it gives us hope in our life’s journey and in our future; it makes us trust in ourselves, in history and in other people.......so today the risen Jesus walks along the streets of our life and sees us immersed in our activities, with all our desires and our needs. In the midst of our everyday circumstances he continues to speak to us; he calls us to live our life with him, for only he is capable of satisfying our thirst for hope. He lives now among the community of disciples that is the Church, and still today calls people to follow him. The call can come at any moment. Today too, Jesus continues to say, “Come, follow me” (Mk 10:21). Accepting his invitation means no longer choosing our own path. Following him means immersing our own will in the will of Jesus, truly giving him priority, giving him pride of place in every area of our lives: in the family, at work, in our personal interests, in ourselves

Vocations to the priesthood and the consecrated life are born out of the experience of a personal encounter with Christ......This process, which enables us to respond positively to God’s call, is possible in Christian communities where the faith is lived intensely, where generous witness is given of adherence to the Gospel, where there is a strong sense of mission which leads people to make the total gift of self for the Kingdom of God.

Dear young people, do not be afraid to follow him and to walk the demanding and courageous paths of charity and generous commitment! In that way you will be happy to serve, you will be witnesses of a joy that the world cannot give, you will be living flames of an infinite and eternal love, you will learn to “give an account of the hope that is within you” (1 Pt 3:15)!"

  • Pope Benedict XVI's text of full message for the Day of Prayer HERE.
  • Resources for Vocation Sunday from the Vocation Directors of Ireland available HERE.
  • Vocations Ireland website
  • Irish Vocation Stories
  • Explore Away - exploreAway: an opportunity for young, single, men and women between the ages of 21-40, who are interested in exploring religious life in a reflective and prayerful environment. If you are discerning your way in life you are invited to join the team over five weekends to experience and explore where God may be calling you.
  • Limerick Diocese Vocation Information available HERE.
  • SS102fm posts and podcasts on Vocations including various priests and religious sharing their stories can be viewed HERE.

God knows me and calls me by my name.…
God has created me to do Him some definite service;
He has committed some work to me
which He has not committed to another.
I have my mission—I never may know it in this life,
but I shall be told it in the next.
Somehow I am necessary for His purposes…
I have a part in this great work;
I am a link in a chain, a bond of connection
between persons.
He has not created me for naught. I shall do good,
I shall do His work;
I shall be an angel of peace, a preacher of truth
in my own place, while not intending it,
if I do but keep His commandments
and serve Him in my calling.
Therefore I will trust Him.
Whatever, wherever I am,
I can never be thrown away.
If I am in sickness, my sickness may serve Him;
In perplexity, my perplexity may serve Him;
If I am in sorrow, my sorrow may serve Him.
My sickness, or perplexity, or sorrow may be
necessary causes of some great end,
which is quite beyond us.
He does nothing in vain; He may prolong my life,
He may shorten it;
He knows what He is about.
He may take away my friends,
He may throw me among strangers,
He may make me feel desolate,
make my spirits sink, hide the future from me—
still He knows what He is about.…
Let me be Thy blind instrument. I ask not to see—
I ask not to know—I ask simply to be used.
Cardinal John Henry Newman.
Meditations and Devotions, "Meditations on Christian Doctrine,"
"Hope in God—Creator", March 7, 1848

Gospel - John 10:27-30

"My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me; and I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish, and no one shall snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father's hand. I and the Father are one."
In a season of thanksgiving, in a time of change, what wonderful consoling and healing words:
"No one shall snatch you out of Gods hands"
We are in the arms of a shepherd
who cares for us, who holds us, who never forgets us.
Jesus, may we have the confidence
and peace to rest in your love.
May we be witnesses to your love this week,
so that all can know this joy in their lives.

Other reflections on this weeks gospel:
Word on Fire
English Dominicans
Sunday Reflections
Centre for Liturgy

Liturgical Odds and Ends
Divine Office - Psalter Week 4
Saints of the Week
22nd April - St Abel McAedh
23rd April - St George (martyr) Patron saint of England
24th April - St Fidelis of Sigmaringen
25th April - St Mark the Evangelist

Our Lady of Good Counsel
26th April - Our Lady of Good Counsel
27th April - St Asicus

The notices we called out on this weeks programme are available HERE.

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