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Vocations Information... What is a Vocation  

"Let us go forward joyfully"


The word Vocation comes from the Latin, vocare, which means “to call.” God calls us together into one people fashioned in the image of Christ. It is by Christ vocation that we are gathered. A vocation is not the exclusive privilege of monks, priests, religious sisters or a few heroic lay persons. God calls everyone who is listening; there is no individual or group for whom God’s call is reserved. But to be effective, a call must be heard, and to hear it we must continually discern our vocation amidst the escalating demands of our daily life. There are so many voices calling for our attention and so many activities distracting us that a serious effort is necessary if we are to become and remain sensitive to the divine presence in our lives.

We need to distinguish between Vocation and Career. In a world that puts such emphasis on success, our concern for our career tends to make us deaf to our vocation. When we are seduced into believing that our career is what counts, we can no longer hear the voice that calls us together; we become so preoccupied with our own plans, projects or promotions that we push everyone away who prevents us from achieving our goals.

Career and Vocation are not mutually exclusive. In fact our vocation might require us to pursue a certain career. Quite often, our vocation becomes visible in a specific job, task or endeavour. But our vocation can never be reduced to these activities.

(Adapted from,Nouwen, H Cited in Durback, R, 1989; 94/95

Durback, R Seeds of Hope, London; 1989, DLT)



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