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Posts Tagged ‘vocation sunday’

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Reflection Questions

  1. The Church celebrates ‘Good Shepherd Sunday’ today. It is an opportunity to consider service of Christ in the Church for the World through a vocation in single life, married life, priesthood, religious life. Can you think of people who are good examples for you of each vocation? Spend time in prayer praying for each one.
  2. Vocation means ‘call’. St Ignatius teaches us that: “God writes his hopes into our deepest desires”. What does that mean God may be calling you to? Imagine the highs and lows of each vocation – what attracts you? What desire is strongest? Are you willing to follow it?
  3. ‘Laying down one’s life for the sheep’ is contrasted with being a ‘hired man’ who works for pay and has no ‘concern’ for the sheep. What do you think is the difference between Vocation and Career? Does one lead down and the other attempt climbing up?
  4. St Peter shares a building image. Very large stones were measured and cut to ‘fit’ and be suitable for building upon. Is your life truly ‘built’ upon Jesus or is it merely ‘looking’ at Jesus? Does your lifestyle ‘show’ you are ‘God’s child…’?
  5. One of the actions done by a good shepherd is to ‘lie down’ in the ‘gateway’ of a small  low fenced circle of stones to care for the sheep and protect them from harm. The good shepherd was willing to fight to the death any wolf seeking to harm the sheep. It was an expectation that a child who was looking after the sheep, if attacked, was to show evidence of scratches or wolf fur to the family. Are you willing to fight and protect God’s family? Seek out the lost who have strayed? Stand attentive to warn of dangerous influences?
  6. ‘Laying down ones life’ is another scriptural picture of the way Jesus lay down his life on the cross – as the good shepherd. Laying down and enduring a sleep-shortened night is something parents do for love of their children. Knowing sheep by name, sharing each day and providing nourishment and shelter. Can you see similarities between parenthood and priesthood? Does ‘laying down your life’ appeal to you or frighten you? Does love lead you – or does fear fill you?
  7. ‘No-one takes it from me, I lay it down on my own’. A vocation is something freely chosen. We ‘hear’ the call of God through desire and attraction, we give ourselves to walk the journey of discovery and we ‘take up’ what is involved in faithfulness to our personal calling. Fear. I’m not good enough. I feel stuck. I don’t know are all human responses. Consider reflecting on the document ‘Discerning your vocation’ to show your willingness to take a further step into God’s call. Click here or go to https://livingtheword.org.nz/resources/
  8. What is one action that you will do to ‘livetheword’ this week?



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Reflection Question 3: Jesus identifies himself as a Shepherd but also a ‘gate’. In the middle east, shepherds would gather their sheep together at night sometimes creating a shelter or collection of wooden sticks to build a fence. Sometimes they may have built with blocks a square with a narrow gap for the sheep to enter in and out. One shepherd would take the role of ‘gate’, lying down in the ‘gap’ as an expression of caring for the sheep and not letting them out, and protecting the sheep from danger coming in. What does this image reveal to you about Jesus? Can you identify anyone’s vocation who follows this ‘laying down of their life’? Can you see the similarities between a Mum, Dad, Priest, Sister, Brother?