By Father Sean Suckiel
For the last three years, I have received countless invitations to speak at parishes, academies, youth groups, high schools and college Newman clubs on the topic of vocations. It has been, and continues to be, a great joy to meet so many people in this ministry.
The theme of my vocation talks is about identity, purpose and mission in life. As young people, we need to be asking ourselves the elementary questions of life: Who am I? Why did God create me? And what is my purpose in life?
God’s Choice Becomes Clear
Ultimately, these questions lead us to discover one’s vocation in life. God has willed us into life with a purpose and a mission. He makes His choice in the mystery of His all-loving and eternal providence for us. And His choice for us goes beyond what we could ever image. In time, God’s choice becomes clear to us as it did in the life of the Blessed Mother.
In the spirit of our diocesan celebration of the Year of Vocations, and in this month of Mary, we must reflect on the great role that Mary plays in fostering and inspiring vocations. Just like Mary, we must freely embrace God’s will, accept his plan and live out the call that He has placed within in our hearts.
At the Annunciation, Mary accepted all that God willed. She united her whole self to the work of salvation. Her “fiat” contains her complete cooperation with God’s plan.
Therefore, just as Mary’s “yes” to God’s plan allowed God to accomplish great things, our “yes” to God allows Him to continue His work in us. As Mary’s fiat was a blessing for herself and others, so too does our “yes” become a source of blessing.
As I reflect upon the successes of the Year for Vocations and the important role that Mary plays in the formation of vocations, I cannot stop thinking about her generosity, her generous gift of self that inspires others to do the same as well.
Mary is known for her many titles and what beautiful titles they are. One of my favorite titles of Mary is the Mother of Vocations because she is the Mother of the Great High Priest Jesus Christ who calls others to share in His priesthood, and she is Mother of the Religious who invites others to follow in His footsteps.
Mary leads by her example and love for her son, Jesus Christ. It is by imitating her practice of faith, hope and charity that men and women of our diocese are inspired to give themselves to her son in the priesthood and religious life.
This weekend, as the Church prepares to celebrate Pentecost, let us pray that the Holy Spirit might enkindle in our hearts a renewed spirit of generosity, that we may be generous with ourselves in finding out what our true vocation in life is, so that we may answer honestly to the questions why God created us and for what purpose.