In his latest Pastoral Letter, Witness to the New World of Faith: A Pastoral Letter on the New Evangelization and our Missionary Call, Archbishop José H. Gomez recalls his five Pastoral Priorities as Archbishop of Los Angeles. The second priority is to promote vocations to the priesthood and to religious consecrated life.
Below is an excerpt from his October 2, 2012 Pastoral Letter:
Building the Family of God
10. My second priority is to promote
vocations to the priesthood and to religious and consecrated life.
Our Church always needs more
men and women who can testify to the radical beauty of a life given totally to
Jesus Christ. In this Year of Faith, I believe we need to focus especially on
vocations to the priesthood.
The priesthood is a gift
and a mystery in God’s plan for the salvation of the world. The priest makes Christ present in the
world. Through his
priests, Christ speaks his words of forgiveness. Through his priests, he offers his
Body and Blood as the bread of life for the life of the world.[xvi]
Jesus said, “He who has seen me has seen the Father.”[xvii]
Through the ministry of the priest, we have Jesus. And through the spiritual
fatherhood of the priest, the men and women of the world today can see and love
their heavenly Father.
Vocations are born of a
Catholic culture. And this Year of Faith should be a time in which we find new
energy to support our priests and seminarians and to build this culture of
vocations. One practical step we can take is to intensify our prayer as the
family of God.
What a difference it would make if every Catholic and every parish were
dedicated to praying every day for our priests and for new vocations! Imagine
the graces that would flow, if many of us would commit ourselves to regular
adoration of the Eucharist and holy hours to pray for vocations!