Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Pilgrimages and Prayer for Vocations

This post is written in Medjugorje - a place of prayer and devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary. I am bowled over by the faith of the pilgrims here. I am accompanying a group from a parish I used work in in Tallaght. They are seasoned pilgrims.

It is striking how many young people are here - many of them searching for their rightful place in God's plan for them. Many consider vocations to priesthood and religious life. It is easy to see how they would ask such questions here. They ask for prayers for guidance. It is a pleasure to meet them and discuss the question of call.

Two weeks ago I accompanied a group for the sevent time to Lourdes with the charity IHCPT. Take a look at their website att The week after Easter is given over to those children and young adults with special needs. They are faith filled - with a sense of joy and celebration that is infectious and enthusiastic. We were blessed with many helpers, doctors, nurses, chaplains and indeed bishops.

Three Irish bishops accompanied the Trust this year, namely Bishops Dermot O Mahony, John MacAreavy and Bill Murphy. The bishops were very encouraging to all present. I asked the group of people with special needs that I am associated with to pray for all those who are considering the call to priesthood and religious life. I am firmly convinced that their enthusiastic prayers will be answered abundantly.