In the course of our lives, this call, which is part of the fibre of our being and the secret of our happiness, comes to us by the work of the Holy Spirit in ever new ways. It enlightens our minds, strengthens our wills, fills us with amazement and sets our hearts afire. At times, the Spirit comes to us in completely unexpected ways. So it was for me when, on 21 September 1953, as I was on my way to an annual school celebration, I was led to stop by a church and go to confession. That day changed my life and left a mark that has endured to the present day. God’s call to the gift of self tends to make itself known gradually: in our encounter with situations of poverty, in moments of prayer, when we see a clear witness to the Gospel, or read something that opens our minds. When we hear God’s word and sense that it is spoken directly to us, in the advice given by a fellow brother or sister, in moments of sickness or sorrow… In all the ways he calls us, God shows infinite creativity.
Message of Pope Francis for the 2023 World Day of Prayer for Vocations on the theme: ‘Vocation: Grace and Mission’