Friday, May 02, 2008

The Importance of Prayer


I was recently interviewed for a publication called The Priest. It is the official paper of the National Conference of Priests and its editor is Greg Watts. Greg has written a lot on Catholic subjects and is the journalist who worked with John Pridmore on his autobiography.
To be honest, The Priest isn't the most widely read of Catholic publications but I've had a few calls from priests who have seen the interview and liked it.
It's too long to publish as a single post, but over the next week or so I'll publish the five questions and my responses to them. I'll start today with the first one.

Q. Father, one of the key elements for promoting vocations in your diocese has been the establishment of Eucharistic Adoration in the parishes. What would you say to those who question the value of praying for vocations?
R. I would say that prayer is a fundamental response to Christ’s command: ‘Ask the Lord of the harvest to send labourers into his harvest’. When I wrote this in a Catholic newspaper some months ago there was a follow up letter from a priest objecting that we have prayed for years without result. This, he argued, was evidence the Holy Spirit was calling for change and in particular he advocated married priests and the ordination of women. But I wouldn’t agree. Have we really offered up an insistent prayer for vocations to the priesthood? I wonder how many of us have satisfied ourselves with the occasional intercession for ‘vocations to the priesthood and religious life’? I firmly believe that our periods of Eucharistic Adoration in Southwark have born fruit in the significant increase in vocations we have seen since the campaign of prayer began.

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