This semester is on vocations. Immediately, most think of vocations to the priesthood, marriage, and consecrated or single life. While these life calls are most definitely all vocations, the starting place of a vocation begins with the call we each receive at the moment of our baptism.
“All Christians in any state or walk of life are called to the fullness of Christian life and to the perfection of charity.” All are called to holiness: “Be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.” In order to reach this perfection the faithful should use the strength dealt out to them by Christ’s gift, so that . . . doing the will of the Father in everything, they may wholeheartedly devote themselves to the glory of God and to the service of their neighbor. Thus the holiness of the People of God will grow in fruitful abundance, as is clearly shown in the history of the Church through the lives of so many saints. (CCC 2013)
All of us have the vocation to be holy. This call to holiness can evoke both fear and apathy. The idea that God desires for us to be “holy” can be intimidating, especially if this is the first time we are hearing that God has placed that call on our lives. We use the world “holy” for God or sacred things, not for our broken humanity. And yet, our father gently and lovingly calls us and forms us into the image of His Son.
“We know that in everything God works for good with those who love him . . . For those whom he fore knew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the first-born among many brethren. And those whom he predestined he also called; and those whom he called he also justified; and those whom he justified he also glorified.” (Romans 8: 28-30)
What an encouraging passage from St. Paul’s Letter to the Romans! As we allow the Holy Spirit to work in our life, we will become more like Christ; we become holy. At the same time, if the call to holiness is something that is as familiar as your drive to work, apathy can set in. How easy it is to say it, but not believe it? How easy is it to quote it, but not actually let the Spirit work?
- Is your life a witness to this call to holiness?
- What is your reaction to this call to holiness? Are you inspired or apathetic?
- How can you better embrace the vocation of holiness?
- What particular Saints do you look to as role models in embracing this call to holiness?