What do you want Me to do for you?

After a two-year hiatus, the Kuching Archdiocesan Vocation Promotion Team was glad to organise the annual Archdiocesan Vocation Weekend, an overnight programme held for youth interested to discover more about a priestly or religious calling at the Gethsemane Pilgrimage Centre.

Dec 02, 2022


By Fr Alvin Ng SJ
After a two-year hiatus, the Kuching Archdiocesan Vocation Promotion Team was glad to organise the annual Archdiocesan Vocation Weekend, an overnight programme held for youth interested to discover more about a priestly or religious calling at the Gethsemane Pilgrimage Centre.

A power outage the night before knocked out (providentially perhaps) the internet and telecommunication connections at the centre, thereby allowing everyone to concentrate fully on the programme without any undue virtual cyber distraction or temptations.

With the Mk.10:36 theme: What do you want Me to do for you? 46 young men and ladies invested their time listening to each congregation’s representative’s sharing on the joys and challenges of his/her calling alongside the order’s charism and role in bringing the Good News to all.

In addition to the diocesan priesthood represented by seminarians from St Peter’s College, religious congregations were also present: Claretian Missionaries (CMF), Order of Friars Minor (OFM), Order of Carmel Discalced Secular (OCDS), Salesians of Don Bosco (SDB), Sisters of St Francis of Sarawak (SSFS) and Society of Jesus (SJ).

While the programme aimed chiefly at sowing the seeds of priestly and religious vocation into the good soil of these youths’ minds and hearts, it also invited them to be open to embrace too, the possibility of the married, as well as single vocation.

The point stressed was for each individual to answer the personal question posed by Christ to each: “What do you want Me to do for you?”

Complemented by the praying of lauds and vespers as well as an evening of Taize, it is hoped that participants were able to enter deeper into reflecting upon their life and the possibility of serving the mission of Christ through a vocation that is properly discerned.

Time was also allocated for them to engage any priest, seminarian, religious sister or brother in casual sharing of the latter’s vocation story. Such conversations personalise the concept of “vocation in the Church,” connecting inquirers to real persons who are as human as they are. And being human, all are sinners, yet called.

Although participant numbers fell short of the anticipated 120, the vocation team took consolation in the fact that the 46, by the nature of the questions they fielded during the Q&A panel discussion, manifested an earnest desire to discover a calling that is authentically Christbased.

At the exit interview — a first, to ensure that essential data and feedback going forward, is sought from each participant – the majority indicated their interest in follow-up sessions that will help them discern further their calling in life.

Beyond mere introduction of the priestly and religious life as well as the formation each vocation entails, it is hoped that future sessions will address deeper issues that will help each inquirer arrive at the joy and freedom necessary to answer God’s call to a hope-filled future.

Thus, the work of vocation promotion is never ending because God never tires of wanting to do something for each one of His children. --Today's Catholic

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