Our vocation our Spirituality.

Christian vocation is a call to live out a particular spirituality. It is a way of life guided and empowered by the Spirit of Jesus Christ.

Isaiah 49:1-7. Gal. 1:15-16.

St. Paul often speaks about Christian vocation in terms of ‘walking in the Spirit.’

Without the activity of the Spirit in us, it is not possible to follow Jesus, to accept his message and to live by his values.
Spirituality is about being led by the Spirit as we commit ourselves to engage in the mission of Jesus in today’s world.

The Spirit is the principal agent of our vocation as Christians, Christians with a mission.

When Jesus sent his disciples on mission, it was as the Father had sent him, the risen Jesus breathed on them, saying, ‘Receive the Holy Spirit’ (John 20:22).

In his Gospel, St. Luke characterises Jesus as a person of the Spirit with an urgent sense of mission. The Spirit leads Jesus and, at every turning point in his life, Jesus opens himself in prayer to the guidance and power of the Spirit. Mk. 1:35-39, 6:45-47

When St. Luke tells us the story of the mission of the early Church in the Acts of the Apostles, he again emphasises that the Spirit is the driving force of mission. Acts.2;

To be a Christian is to seek and co-operate with the Spirit of Jesus at work in today’s world.

To engage with the Spirit of Jesus is to stand with the poor

According to St. Luke’s Gospel, at the beginning of his mission, Jesus quotes from the prophet Isaiah, ‘The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to bring good news to the poor’ (Luke 4:18).

He took the side of the poor and the outcasts. He challenged structures and cultural practices which excluded people in any way from the society of his day. He healed people who were prevented from active worship of God because of ritual impurity, He cast out the evil demons that enslaved the people, freeing them to the fullness of humanity and in the image of the living God.

To engage in the Spirit of Jesus, is to stand with the poor who are exploited today and to work for a situation and an environment in which no one is excluded from the blessings God wishes for all.

It also involves action on behalf of the exploited earth from a deep respect for God’s creation. It is through God’s creation that we can see the love and beauty that God put into the world. “God so loved the world that he sent his Son”… (Jn 3:16)

Through work for social and environmental justice, Christians discover and are evangelised by God’s Spirit moving in people’s lives and in the whole of creation.

We Cross Boundaries

The vocation of a Christian involves crossing boundaries of language, ethnic origin, culture and religion. We must go to peoples of different cultures and faiths to share what we have experienced in and through the Good News of Jesus Christ.

In responding to Jesus’ call to proclaim his Good News, we realise that what we have is a gift to be freely offered, shared, but never to be imposed.

But we are also conscious that our experience is always culturally limited and needs to be enriched through openness to other cultural practices and religious beliefs. We must be convinced that the Spirit of Jesus is at work in all cultures and religions, helping people to live together in just and loving relationships and leading them to experience God’s salvation.

We seek and affirm the Spirit who is already active in people’s lives before we arrive on the scene, knowing that we have much to learn about the ways of the Spirit of Jesus. Our crossing of boundaries is an experience of giving and receiving.

The ongoing experience in the life of a Christian.

Our Vocation is to respond to a call, rather than pursue a career.

The ancient prophets insisted that they did not choose to be messengers of God, but were called to this role, often unexpectedly and without any clear understanding of how things would turn out.

The Call of Gideon, Jgs.6:11-24. The call of Samuel, Sam. 3:1-21. The call of Jeremiah Jer. 1:4-10. The call of Isaiah, Is. 6:1-13.

Jesus had a deep sense of being called by God and he invites us to join him in responding to that call. Mk.1:9-13, The mission of the disciples Matt.10:1-16, Matt. 28:16-20, Mk.16:16-20.

You did not choose me, but I chose you. And I appointed you to go and bear fruit’ (John 15:16).

The call is not just a one-off event, but an ongoing experience of life. It is an experience that is constantly evolving, being enriched and becoming.

Each day is a time for hearing and responding to the call in the changing circumstances of life. Rom.5:1-5. Rom. 12:2. ‘Let the renewing of your minds transform you, so that you may discern for yourselves what is the will of God- what is good and acceptable and mature.’

Knowing that we are called instils confidence, because the God who calls is the God who always empowers us to respond. Jn.17:21-23.

But this also involves a commitment to learn, to study, to hear the word of God, to absorb it and to be absorbed by it.

That is a risk that one must take in trust and faith, knowing that it means change. It means letting go of preconceived ideas and attitudes in order to follow the call of Christ and enter into a world with new eyes and heart.

Christians also enter partnerships for action

Our life is a journey with others who also hear the call, supporting and encouraging each other on the way.

We are members of a missionary Church in which all are called to witness to Jesus Christ.

The Spirit endows people in the Church with different gifts and ministries, which are meant to complement one another in our one mission to help establish the reign of God.

The partnership of ordained and lay, highlights the missionary vocation of all the baptised and with the spirit, help us to explore new avenues of ministry in the Church.

The way we relate to each other is meant to be a sign of the life-giving relationships we are promoting in the mission of Jesus and a challenge to a world often divided and in conflict on the basis of cultural differences.

Convinced that the Spirit of God moves everywhere, we even enter partnerships for action with people outside the Church whose vision and values are similar to our own.

Ultimately, we are caught up in the mission of God through Jesus, who continues to reach out to all, inviting everyone to share the divine life and blessings as a people of God. We believe we are being constantly drawn into the community of love between Father, Son and Holy Spirit and asked to live as loving people in our daily lives. We hope, we pray, we can do that faithfully and help others to respond to God’s ongoing outreach and invitation to them.

INTERCESSIONS FOR THE 4th SUNDAY OF EASTER

PRIEST: Christ is the Good Shepherd who gives his life for his flock. In our Eucharist today filled with gratitude for the gift of eternal life, let us rejoice.

READER: As disciples of Christ we must learn to recognise and respond to his his presence in the poor and displaced. May our hearts be open to love those who need us.Lord in Your Mercy, Response: Hear our Prayer

As children of God, may our hearts be filled with love, integrity and joy and true images of Christ. Lord in Your Mercy, Response: Hear our Prayer

We pray that we may never be afraid of proclaiming the Good News, even in the face of hatred, opposition and indifference. Lord in Your Mercy, Response: Hear our Prayer

We pray for the worshippers of God everywhere, May we all sing for ever of his love and work together for justice and salvation in our world. Lord in Your Mercy, Response: Hear our Prayer

We pray for those who would do us harm, because of our faith in the risen Lord Jesus. May they experience the love and mercy that God is offering. Lord in Your Mercy, Response: Hear our Prayer

We pray for Missionaries everywhere, may their faith and courage be strengthened with love and compassion. Lord in Your Mercy, Response: Hear our Prayer

We remember especially the sick, those in hospital and those who are housebound, those of our own families wherever they may be. Lord in Your Mercy, Response: Hear our Prayer

Let us pray for those who have recently died… and for all our dead… and for all who mourn that they may be comforted. Lord in Your Mercy, Response: Hear our Prayer

Now let us pray for a few moments in silence for our own needs and intentions.

Let us ask Mary the Mother of the Lord to pray with us: Hail Mary…

PRIEST: Almighty and ever-living God, we thank you for hearing and answering our prayers because we ask them through your Son Our Lord Jesus Christ.

AMEN

Intercessions for the 3rd Sunday of Easter

INTERCESSIONS FOR THE 3rd SUNDAY OF EASTER

PRIEST: Christ is the Good Shepherd who gives his life for his flock. In our Eucharist today filled with gratitude let us rejoice.

READER: As disciples of Christ we must learn to recognise and respond to Jesus’ invitation to love without reserve. May our hearts become a home for the word of God. Lord in your mercy. Response: Hear our Prayer.

As disciples of Christ, may we never be afraid of proclaiming the Good News and to care for those we see to be in need. Lord in your mercy. Hear our Prayer.

Let us pray for those suffering the horrors of war and violent conflict in our world today. May the hearts of those responsible be changed by the experience of God’s Love and compassion.

Lord in your mercy. Hear our Prayer.

We pray for all who worship God. May we all work together for justice and salvation in our world.

Lord in your mercy. Hear our Prayer.

We pray for Missionaries everywhere, may their faith and courage be strengthened with Joy in the resurrection of Christ. Lord in your mercy. Response: Hear our Prayer.

We remember especially the sick, those in hospital and those who are housebound, those of our own families wherever they may be. Lord in your mercy. Hear our Prayer.

Let us pray for those who have recently died… and for all our dead… and for all who mourn that they may be comforted. Lord in your mercy. Hear our Prayer.

Now let us pray for a few moments in silence for our own needs and intentions.

Let us ask Mary the Mother of the Lord to pray with us: Hail Mary…

PRIEST: Almighty and ever-living God

we thank you for hearing and answering our prayers because we ask them through your Son Our Risen Lord Jesus Christ.

AMEN

The 15 Stations of the Resurrection

15 stations of the Resurrection

This is intended to be used as Lectio Divina, or meditation,

prayers can be added as inspired. (biblical texts adapted from ‘The Jerusalem Bible’)

1/ the Resurrection

V. Jesus we adore you and we bless you:

R. By your Cross and Resurrection you have redeemed the world.

According to the Gospels, there was no human witness to the resurrection of our Lord Jesus. We are not told how it happened, only that early in the morning of the first day of the week, Sunday, Jesus physically rose from the dead and he left the tomb in which he was laid.

Let us Pray

Lord Jesus Christ Son of the living God, have mercy on me a Sinner.

Our Father….

Glory be…

2/ Mary of Magdala finds the empty tomb.Mt. 28:1-8.

V. Jesus we adore you and we bless you:

R. By your Cross and Resurrection you have redeemed the world.

After the Sabbath, and towards dawn on the first day of the week, Mary of Magdala and the other Mary went to visit the sepulchre.

And all at once there was a violent earthquake, for the angel of the Lord, descending from heaven, came and rolled away the stone and sat on it.

His face was like lightning, his robe white as snow.

The guards were so shaken, so frightened of him, that they were like dead men.

But the angel spoke; and he said to the women, ‘There is no need for you to be afraid. I know you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified.

He is not here, for he has risen, as he said he would. Come and see the place where he lay,

then go quickly and tell his disciples, “He has risen from the dead and now he is going before you to Galilee; it is there you will see him”. Now I have told you.’

Filled with awe and great joy the women came quickly away from the tomb and ran to tell the disciples.

Let us Pray

Lord Jesus Christ Son of the living God, have mercy on me a Sinner.

Our Father….

Glory be…

3/ Peter and John go to the tomb Jn. 20:3-9.

V. Jesus we adore you and we bless you:

R. By your Cross and Resurrection you have redeemed the world.

So Peter set out with the other disciple to go to the tomb.

They ran together, but the other disciple, running faster than Peter, reached the tomb first;

he bent down and saw the linen cloths lying on the ground, but did not go in.

Simon Peter who was following now came up, went right into the tomb, saw the linen cloths on the ground,

and also the cloth that had been over his head; this was not with the linen cloths but rolled up in a place by itself.

Then the other disciple who had reached the tomb first also went in; he saw and he believed.

Till this moment they had failed to understand the teaching of scripture, that he must rise from the dead.

Let us Pray

Lord Jesus Christ Son of the living God, have mercy on me a Sinner.

Our Father….

Glory be…

4/ Mary meets the risen Jesus. Jn. 20:11-18.

V. Jesus we adore you and we bless you:

R. By your Cross and Resurrection you have redeemed the world.

Meanwhile Mary stayed outside near the tomb, weeping. Then, still weeping, she stooped to look inside,

and saw two angels in white sitting where the body of Jesus had been, one at the head, the other at the feet.

They said, ‘Woman, why are you weeping?’ ‘They have taken my Lord away’ she replied ‘and I don’t know where they have put him.’

As she said this she turned round and saw Jesus standing there, though she did not recognise him.

Jesus said, ‘Woman, why are you weeping? Who are you looking for?’ Supposing him to be the gardener, she said, ‘Sir, if you have taken him away, tell me where you have put him, and I will go and remove him’.

Jesus said, ‘Mary!’ She knew him then and said to him in Hebrew, ‘Rabbuni!’ – which means Master.

Jesus said to her, ‘Do not cling to me, because I have not yet ascended to the Father. But go and find the brothers, and tell them: I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’

So Mary of Magdala went and told the disciples that she had seen the Lord and that he had said these things to her.

Let us Pray

Lord Jesus Christ Son of the living God, have mercy on me a Sinner.

Our Father….

Glory be…

5/ Jesus appears on the road to Emmaus LK. 24:13-27.

V. Jesus we adore you and we bless you:

R. By your Cross and Resurrection you have redeemed the world.

That very same day, two of them were on their way to a village called Emmaus, seven miles from Jerusalem,

and they were talking together about all that had happened.

Now as they talked this over, Jesus himself came up and walked by their side;

but something prevented them from recognising him.

He said to them, ‘What matters are you discussing as you walk along?’ They stopped short, their faces downcast.

Then one of them, called Cleopas, answered him, ‘You must be the only is person staying in Jerusalem who does not know the things that have been happening there these last few days’.

‘What things?’ he asked. ‘All about Jesus of Nazareth’ they answered ‘who proved he was a great prophet by the things he said and did in the sight of God and of the whole people;

and how our chief priests and our leaders handed him over to be sentenced to death, and had him crucified.

Our own hope had been that he would be the one to set Israel free. And this is not all: two whole days have gone by since it all happened;

and some women from our group have astounded us: they went to the tomb in the early morning,

and when they did not find the body, they came back to tell us they had seen a vision of angels who declared he was alive.

Some of our friends went to the tomb and found everything exactly as the women had reported, but of him they saw nothing.’

Then he said to them, ‘You foolish men! So slow to believe the full message of the prophets!

Was it not ordained that the Christ should suffer and so enter into his glory?’

Then, starting with Moses and going through all the prophets, he explained to them the passages throughout the scriptures that were about himself.

Let us Pray

Lord Jesus Christ Son of the living God, have mercy on me a Sinner.

Our Father….

Glory be…

  1. 6/ Jesus is recognised in the breaking of the Bread Lk.24:28-32.

V. Jesus we adore you and we bless you:

R. By your Cross and Resurrection you have redeemed the world.

When they drew near to the village to which they were going, he made as if to go on;

but they pressed him to stay with them. ‘It is nearly evening’ they said ‘and the day is almost over.’ So he went in to stay with them.

Now while he was with them at table, he took the bread and said the blessing; then he broke it and handed it to them.

And their eyes were opened and they recognised him; but he had vanished from their sight.

Then they said to each other, ‘Did not our hearts burn within us as he talked to us on the road and explained the scriptures to us?’

Let us Pray

Lord Jesus Christ Son of the living God, have mercy on me a Sinner.

Our Father….

Glory be…

7/ Jesus appears to the apostles in the upper rooms Lk.24:36-43

V. Jesus we adore you and we bless you:

R. By your Cross and Resurrection you have redeemed the world.

They were still talking about all this when he himself stood among them and said to them, ‘Peace be with you!’

In a state of alarm and fright, they thought they were seeing a ghost.

But he said, ‘Why are you so agitated, and why are these doubts rising in your hearts?

Look at my hands and feet; yes, it is I indeed. Touch me and see for yourselves; a ghost has no flesh and bones as you can see I have.’

And as he said this he showed them his hands and feet.

Their joy was so great that they still could not believe it, and they stood there dumbfounded; so he said to them, ‘Have you anything here to eat?’

And they offered him a piece of grilled fish,

which he took and ate before their eyes.

Let us Pray

Lord Jesus Christ Son of the living God, have mercy on me a Sinner.

Our Father….

Glory be…

8/ Thomas the doubter Jn.20:26-29.

V. Jesus we adore you and we bless you:

R. By your Cross and Resurrection you have redeemed the world.

Eight days later the disciples were in the house again and Thomas was with them. The doors were closed, but Jesus came in and stood among them. ‘Peace be with you’ he said.

Then he spoke to Thomas, ‘Put your finger here; look, here are my hands. Give me your hand; put it into my side. Doubt no longer but believe.’

Thomas replied, ‘My Lord and my God!’

Jesus said to him: ‘You believe because you can see me. Happy are those who have not seen and yet believe.’

Let us Pray

Lord Jesus Christ Son of the living God, have mercy on me a Sinner.

Our Father….

Glory be…

9/ Jesus sends the Apostles. The mission to the world Mt.28:16-20.

V. Jesus we adore you and we bless you:

R. By your Cross and Resurrection you have redeemed the world.

Meanwhile the eleven disciples set out for Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had arranged to meet them.

When they saw him they fell down before him, though some hesitated.

Jesus came up and spoke to them. He said, ‘All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.

Go, therefore, make disciples of all the nations; baptise them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,

and teach them to observe all the commands I gave you. And know that I am with you always; yes, to the end of time.’

Let us Pray

Lord Jesus Christ Son of the living God, have mercy on me a Sinner.

Our Father….

Glory be…

10 /The appearance on the shore of Tiberias. Peter is questioned Jn.21:15-19

V. Jesus we adore you and we bless you:

R. By your Cross and Resurrection you have redeemed the world.

After the meal Jesus said to Simon Peter, ‘Simon son of John, do you love me more than these others do?’ He answered, ‘Yes Lord, you know I love you’. Jesus said to him, ‘Feed my lambs’.

A second time he said to him, ‘Simon son of John, do you love me?’ He replied, ‘Yes, Lord, you know I love you’. Jesus said to him, ‘Look after my sheep’.

Then he said to him a third time, ‘Simon son of John, do you love me?’ Peter was upset that he asked him the third time, ‘Do you love me?’ and said, ‘Lord, you know everything; you know I love you’. Jesus said to him, ‘Feed my sheep.

I tell you most solemnly, when you were young you put on your own belt and walked where you liked; but when you grow old you will stretch out your hands, and somebody else will put a belt round you and take you where you would rather not go.’

In these words he indicated the kind of death by which Peter would give glory to God. After this he said, ‘Follow me’.

Let us Pray

Lord Jesus Christ Son of the living God, have mercy on me a Sinner.

Our Father….

Glory be…

  1. 11/ The Ascension Acts. 1:6-11.

V. Jesus we adore you and we bless you:

R. By your Cross and Resurrection you have redeemed the world.

Now having met together, they asked him, ‘Lord, has the time come? Are you going to restore the kingdom to Israel?’

He replied, ‘It is not for you to know times or dates that the Father has decided by his own authority,

but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you, and then you will be my witnesses not only in Jerusalem but throughout Judaea and Samaria, and indeed to the ends of the earth’.

As he said this he was lifted up while they looked on, and a cloud took him from their sight.

They were still staring into the sky when suddenly two men in white were standing near them

and they said, ‘Why are you men from Galilee standing here looking into the sky? Jesus who has been taken up from you into heaven, this same Jesus will come back in the same way as you have seen him go there.’

Let us Pray

Lord Jesus Christ Son of the living God, have mercy on me a Sinner.

Our Father….

Glory be…

12/Pentecost Acts. 2:1-4.

V. Jesus we adore you and we bless you:

R. By your Cross and Resurrection you have redeemed the world.

When Pentecost day came round, they had all met in one room,

when suddenly they heard what sounded like a powerful wind from heaven, the noise of which filled the entire house in which they were sitting;

and something appeared to them that seemed like tongues of fire; these separated and came to rest on the head of each of them.

They were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and began to speak foreign languages as the Spirit gave them the gift of speech.

Let us Pray

Lord Jesus Christ Son of the living God, have mercy on me a Sinner.

Our Father….

Glory be…

13/ Peter’s address to the crowd Acts. 2;14-18

V. Jesus we adore you and we bless you:

R. By your Cross and Resurrection you have redeemed the world.

Then Peter stood up with the Eleven and addressed them in a loud voice: ‘Men of Judaea, and all you who live in Jerusalem, make no mistake about this, but listen carefully to what I say.

These men are not drunk, as you imagine; why, it is only the third hour of the day.

‘On the contrary, this is what the prophet spoke of:

In the days to come-it is the Lord who speaks-I will pour out my spirit on all mankind. Their sons and daughters shall prophesy, your young men shall see visions, your old men shall dream dreams.

Even on my slaves, men and women, in those days, I will pour out my spirit.

Let us Pray

Lord Jesus Christ Son of the living God, have mercy on me a Sinner.

Our Father….

Glory be…

14/ The cure of a lame man Acts. 3:1-10.

V. Jesus we adore you and we bless you:

R. By your Cross and Resurrection you have redeemed the world.

Once, when Peter and John were going up to the Temple for the prayers at the ninth hour,

it happened that there was a man being carried past. He was a cripple from birth; and they used to put him down every day near the Temple entrance called the Beautiful Gate so that he could beg from the people going in.

When this man saw Peter and John on their way into the Temple he begged from them.

Both Peter and John looked straight at him and said, ‘Look at us’.

He turned to them expectantly, hoping to get something from them,

but Peter said, ‘I have neither silver nor gold, but I will give you what I have: in the name of Jesus Christ the Nazarene, walk!’

Peter then took him by the hand and helped him to stand up. Instantly his feet and ankles became firm,

he jumped up, stood, and began to walk, and he went with them into the Temple, walking and jumping and praising God.

Everyone could see him walking and praising God,

and they recognised him as the man who used to sit begging at the Beautiful Gate of the Temple. They were all astonished and unable to explain what had happened to him.

Let us Pray

Lord Jesus Christ Son of the living God, have mercy on me a Sinner.

Our Father….

Glory be…

15/ Peter raises Dorcas from the dead Acts. 9:36-43

V. Jesus we adore you and we bless you:

R. By your Cross and Resurrection you have redeemed the world.

At Jaffa there was a woman disciple called Tabitha, or Dorcas in Greek, who never tired of doing good or giving in charity.

But the time came when she got ill and died, and they washed her and laid her out in a room upstairs.

Lydda is not far from Jaffa, so when the disciples heard that Peter was there, they sent two men with an urgent message for him, ‘Come and visit us as soon as possible’.

Peter went back with them straight-away, and on his arrival they took him to the upstairs room, where all the widows stood round him in tears, showing him tunics and other clothes Dorcas had made when she was with them.

Peter sent them all out of the room and knelt down and prayed. Then he turned to the dead woman and said, ‘Tabitha, stand up’. She opened her eyes, looked at Peter and sat up.

Peter helped her to her feet, then he called in the saints and widows and showed them she was alive.

The whole of Jaffa heard about it and many believed in the Lord.

Peter stayed on some time in Jaffa, lodging with a leather-tanner called Simon.

Let us Pray

Lord Jesus Christ Son of the living God, have mercy on me a Sinner.

Our Father….

Glory be…