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During its annual Vocations Week (September 9-16) the Catholic Church in Scotland is encouraging secondary school students to consider the lives of six very different people who responded to God’s call in their lives.
The church has produced material entitled Six Calls which encourages students to learn more about figures as diverse as Pope Benedict, Mother Theresa and Chiara Badono, an Italian teenager on the path to sainthood.
Father John Morrison, Assistant Director of Priests for Scotland, said: ‘I think this is a great opportunity for the students to really engage with the lives of these very inspiring figures.
‘In recounting the vocation stories of the last three Popes, Mother Theresa, Edith Stein and Chiara Badano, we hope the students will be inspired to reflect God’s plan for their lives. We hope to show that the saints were not superhuman but people who simply responded generously and sincerely to God’s call.’
Bishop John Keenan, president of priests for Scotland, said: ‘Vocations Awareness week in autumn, introduced a generation ago, is now part and parcel of our church’s tradition and annual cycle in Scotland.
‘As our young people return to school a year older their thoughts turn to what lies ahead of them as adults, in terms of careers and relationships and lifestyles.
‘In thinking of these things they are easily mesmerised by a secular culture that promises them the dream job, the ideal partner and the celebrity circuit. The media presents them with role models to follow who are living the dream and who seem to have it all.
‘Into this mix it is good that our Church plants seeds of vocation. It is good for our young people to realise that God already has a dream for each one of them, that putting their lives into His hands, following His example of asking what you can give to the world rather than what you can get from it, is the only way to real peace and joy.
‘This year we are asking our young people to get to know the saints, the men and women of our times who lived their lives for love of God and humanity. These Gospel celebrities range from popes to school kids, include men and women, and travel across all continents of the world.
‘I am sure our young people will find in them better role models who inspire them to opt for the way of real freedom and happiness, in wanting nothing from life before wanting the adventure of faith, hope and love.’