Tuesday, March 25, 2014

"Here am I..." on the Feast of the Annunciation

Today is a really special day for anyone discerning their vocation in life...It's the Feast of the Annunciation.
On this day we reflect on Mary's 'yes' to God. Read the account of the annunciation from the Gospel of St Luke. Read it slowly...

"In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a town in Galilee called Nazareth, to a virgin engaged to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. The virgin's name was Mary. And he came to her and said, "Greetings, favoured one! The Lord is with you." But she was much perplexed by his words and pondered what sort of greeting this might be. The angel said to her, "Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favour with God. And now, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you will name him Jesus. He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Most High, and the Lord God will give to him the throne of his ancestor David.  He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end."  Mary said to the angel, "How can this be, since I am a virgin?"  The angel said to her, "The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore  the child to be born will be holy; he will be called Son of God. And now, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son; and this is the sixth month for her who was said to be barren. For nothing will be impossible with God." Then Mary said, "Here am I, the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your word." Then the angel departed from her."
Pay attention to Mary's emotions and responses. She's perplexed. Sound familiar? Many folk who are discerning a vocation  talk about the difficulty they have in understanding the enormity (and beauty) of God's call. Mary 'ponders' all of this.Today, let's stop and ponder...

On Friday evening in Dublin I'll be running another Soul Food session. It's a relaxed evening of information, prayer and food for men interested in learning more about a religious vocation. We'll kick off at 6.15pm. Read more about it on our website...www.PresentationBrothers.org
If you'd like to come e-mail me at vocation@PresentationBrothers.org

Friday, March 14, 2014

Date for your diary...

If you're living or working in Dublin, or within reach of it, you might be interested in coming along to our 'Soul Food' Vocations Evening at Presentation Brothers, Glasthule on Friday evening 28th March.

Soul Food is an opportunity for men interested in religious life to come together for some prayer, a short talk, some discussion and some food.

The goal is to help men interested in figuring out their vocation to come together in a prayerful and supportive environment.

The evening is relaxed, informal and, hopefully, helpful too!

Soul Food begins at 6.15pm and finishes at about 9pm. We start with Evening Prayer and finish with Compline (Night Prayer).

Overnight accommodation is available for those who are travelling.

Booking is not essential but if you plan on attending, send an e-mail to Brother Anthony at vocation@PresentationBrothers.org or text/call him at 086-0898120.

Let us know if you'd like any more information. Do you know anyone who might like to come?

You can read more about it on our website.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Lent begins...

Lent begins today, Ash Wednesday. Many people set themselves goals to lose weight and get fit. Lent is a time for us to get spiritually fit. If you're discerning your vocation in life, this is very important (and very helpful).
Lent is about putting God - not ourselves and our ego - at the centre of our lives. It's about honestly recognising our sinfulness and doing penance.
This is an important time of year for anyone who is discerning a religious vocation. You might be tempted to take a consumerist approach - browsing through websites and catalogues, wondering what religious order is the best fit for you. However, in Lent, the focus should be on God - the author of your vocation. Shift the focus from you choosing to God who calls.
If you're serious about discerning then this is a great opportunity to start some practices and habits; the habit of daily prayer, of daily Mass, of daily Scripture reading, of helping people around you...
In the words of a famous advertising slogan, just do it