Heavenly Father, in your plan for our Salvation you provide shepherds for your people. Look with love upon our Homes and communities that the Holy Spirit will inspire and raise up from among us worthy Priests, Deacons and Religious to care for your flock, minister at your altars, to be ardent but gentle servants of the Gospel and inspiring witnesses to your Kingdom. Lord, we ask you to receive our prayer which we make through your Son, Jesus Christ. Amen


SUNDAY – 25 April

Today, the fourth Sunday of Easter, is known as Good Shepherd Sunday because in the Gospel we hear Jesus describe how He is the gate of the sheepfold, the framework for Jesus’ teaching about himself as the Good Shepherd who lays down his life for his sheep. That is why it is chosen as World day of Prayer for Vocations to the Priesthood and the Religious Life.

Today is a wonderful opportunity for each one of us to pray as a community that men and women will recognise and answer the call to the Religious Life, a life dedicated to care and service. What better way to ‘love thy neighbour.’  In 2015 the number of priests in Europe fell by some 1200 - figures to ponder. We all have a responsibility to ensure we leave a faith that is vibrant and secure for the future, for our future generations to whom we leave this world. One way to do this is to pray.    There are many prayers for vocations – one is printed below.

Pope Francis writes to us inviting us to pray earnestly and trust in God for those called to share in the Good Shepherd’s ministry of caring for his flock. We should not allow ourselves to become discouraged with thoughts of the inevitable, of what we have to do without priests. We can entrust the whole Church to the providence of God through our prayers for religious vocations.                      Colin Morrell



“The Lord’s call is not an intrusion of God in our freedom; it is not a “cage” or a burden to be borne. On the contrary, it is the loving initiative whereby God encounters us and invites us to be part of a great undertaking. He opens before our eyes the horizon of a greater sea and an abundant catch.”


Read the Message