Not just leaving it up to pastors who insist their congregations pray for vocations, the USCCB is releasing this fall "You Could Make a Difference," a 17-minute vocation video and DVD, to assist parishes, youth groups and others interested in promoting vocations.
Consciously embracing the New Evangelization, the video tool is intended to enable parish groups to get the conversation started about vocations. It features four segments that illustrate how priests and religious can serve the needs of the church and includes a brief study guide, available online to facilitate discussion.
Father Mike Schwarte, the pastor in Petersburg, leads two parishes separated by a glacier, and pilots a small plane between them. He tells a compelling story of personal conversion and reflects his delight in bringing the sacraments to people in southeast Alaska.The DVD runs for $10 each ($15 for the videocassette) and can be ordered through the USCCB Communications Department.
Father Agustin Mateo, pastor of a Latin American parish in Washington, D.C., shows life in an urban, multi-cultural parish, where Sunday means Mass, religious education, and hospitality. He highlights the strength he draws from the congregation and his belief that he can face anything because God provides for whatever is humanly lacking in him.
Sister Janet Gildea, MD and Sister Peggy Deneweth, RN, Sisters of Charity from Cincinnati, show life in the medical clinic they founded in El Paso, where they practice what they call "poverty medicine." Their work resembles that of the Charity sisters in pioneer days when they helped people along the frontier, they said.
Sister Mary Claudina Sanz, a member of the Oblates of St. Francis, directs the Mary Elizabeth Lange Center Baltimore, a home for troubled young women which is named for the Oblates' founder. Sister Claudina describes girls from the program who go to college and return to help others troubled as they once were. She speaks of her family in Belize where her parents with eight children took in three more who needed a home. At the Mary Elizabeth Lange Center, she provides similar warmth and care for young women.
The Curt Jester links to a different (better?) video produced by the Legionaries of Christ and Regnum Christi, and notes that Bishop Clayton has not only panned the Conference's offering, but thinks it will do more harm than good (cap tip: St. Leonard's).
It's about time we see (some? more?) US episcopal presence in the blogosphere.