This question of the role of religious brothers is a key one in the Church. The Lord is still powerfully calling young men and women to serve the Church as priests, brothers, sisters, nuns and monks. Vocations to the priesthood is a key concern, and thanks be to God, some young men are entering both discernment and formation for the priesthood. Young women are entering religious life as Sisters in communities throughout the United States. But the vocation to be a religious brother, a man who is living a particular charism, living in community, living his vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience, is becoming more and more hidden.
We need men who feel the call to serve the Lord as religious brothers to come forward. We urge these men to speak to the brothers who serve so generously and tirelessly throughout the diocese in health care, catechetical, educational, parochial and many other apostolates.
The Brothers Think Tank has announced the first-ever Religious Brothers Day will be May 1, on the feast of St. Joseph the Worker. There will be a Mass on Sunday, April 30, at 11 a.m. at St. Gregory the Great Church, Bellerose.
All religious brothers will be recognized during this national virtual event with special content hosted on yearforconsecratedlife.com.
Following the publication of the Vatican document on the “Identity and Mission of the Religious Brother in the Church,” on Oct. 4, 2015, the feast of St. Francis of Assisi, a committee was formed to plan the celebration, which will include prayer services and tributes to jubilarian brothers from lay and mixed communities and institutes of apostolic life, as well as other activities that are in the works.
Here in the Diocese of Brooklyn and Queens, we celebrate the presence of almost 100 Brothers from these communities: Franciscan Brothers of Brooklyn, Sacred Heart Brothers, Marist Brothers of the Schools, De La Salle Christian Brothers, Xaverian Brothers, Brothers of the Holy Cross, Franciscan Missionary Brothers, Passionist Brothers and Redemptorist Brothers.
The Diocese of Brooklyn invites you to celebrate the religious Brothers in your lives by sending a memory of your favorite Brother and how you came to know him to The Tablet. Your memory could spark the interest of someone just waiting to be asked.
Help us to celebrate the vocations of these wonderful and committed men to the service of our Church!