By ZENIT Staff

This Sunday, May 3, is Vocations or Good Shepherd Sunday, the dedicated annual day for Catholics around the world to offer special prayers to encourage vocations from families and parishes to the priesthood and to religious life. On Sunday RTÉ One television will broadcast Mass for vocations at 11.00 am and it will be celebrated by Bishop Alphonsus Cullinan and concelebrated by Father Willie Purcell.

Ahead of the world day of prayer for vocations, the chair of the Bishops’ Council for Vocations, Bishop Cullinan, said, “We join with Pope Francis in asking the Church to continue to promote vocations. The Holy Father asks us to find courage to say ‘yes’ to God, to overcome all weariness through faith in Christ. My prayer is that all who are being called to diocesan priesthood will have that courage to say ‘yes’ to God`s call!”

Father Purcell, National Diocesan Vocations Coordinator of Ireland, said, “During these days of social distancing and isolation we have the opportunity to connect with the unfolding plan of God in our lives. For those who are discerning a vocation to diocesan priesthood and religious life it is a valuable time through prayer and reflection to listen more deeply to where God is calling you, and in generosity to say ‘yes’ to that call.”

Please see below the text of Pope Francis’ message for Vocations Sunday which this year has the theme, Words of Vocation: pain, gratitude, encouragement, and praise.

Bishop Alphonsus Cullinan is Bishop of Waterford & Lismore and chair of the Council for Vocations of the Irish Catholic Bishops’ Conference. This Mass will be broadcast on RTÉ One television, Radio 1, and on digital at 11.00 am on May 3 from its Donnybrook studio. It will be the first Mass from RTÉ to use a virtual outdoor chapel created on a video wall. The organist for the Mass will be Simon Orrock; violist, Killian Grumley-Traynor; Cantor, Kerri Connor; conductor, Sister. Moira Bergin; and Deacon Rev Eric Cooney will also be in attendance.

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