When you understand all three levels of vocation and the place each one holds in the hierarchy of importance, it becomes much easier to order your life and your priorities.

The term “vocation” means much more than the standard dictionary definition of “a career path or line of work.” It is more of a “calling” than a “job.” According to John Paul II, your vocation answers the question, “Why am I alive?” Moreover, he believed, only when you’re living out your vocation can you find fulfillment in this life. Your vocation, understood, embraced, and lived, is what makes you feel truly and fully alive.

There are three different levels of vocations.

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We are surrounded by Philistines, you and I, and how like Goliath do all of them appear!

In one way or another, all of us have this call as well, this call from God deep within our souls to stand firm for the Church and to trust in Christ. For Christ is the Lord and Son of God, and the good shepherd who alone can scatter the wolves and the lions. Yes, there is a God in the Church, and the battle is His.

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This week’s Ask Alice: I’ve been looking into becoming Catholic. Some advice, please!



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G.Y. writes: I’ve been looking into becoming Catholic, as I keep having a dream that Jesus himself is asking me to. I agree with the Bible but I’m scared I will be rejected by the church, due to having a bad past, having sinned, and lived in sin. Could you give me some advice?

Alice answers: How blessed you are that Jesus is calling you to become a Catholic! Treasure each dream of our Precious Lord, and don’t hesitate to answer Jesus’ loving call!

Throughout the Bible, God speaks to people in dreams. Samuel was a young boy when God awakened him at night:

“…Samuel was sleeping in in the temple of the Lord where the ark of God was. The Lord called to Samuel, who answered, ‘Here I am.” (1 Samuel 3:4)

There is no perfect time to change our lives. It’s never the ideal time to get married, have a baby, change careers, or move to another country. Similarly, there’s no perfect time to become a Catholic. When Jesus called his disciples, they were at work. They immediately stopped what they were doing, walked off their jobs, and left their careers, families and friends to follow Jesus.

“As they were walking along the Sea of Galilee he watched two brothers, Simon now known as peter, and his brother Andrew, casting a net into the sea. They were fishermen. He said to them, ‘Come after me and I will make you fishers of men.’ They immediately abandoned their nets and became his followers.” (Matthew 4:18-20)

Don’t worry about getting rejected. Ours is a church of sinners. Adam and Eve, our first parents, committed the original sin. Moses was a murderer, yet God called him. King David was an adulterer. Jesus expelled 7 demons from Mary Magdalene. Peter denied our Lord.

The Church will not reject you, since every priest is a shepherd, divinely commissioned to bring sinners (lost sheep) back to God.

“All men have sinned and are deprived
of the glory of God.”
(Romans 3:23)

Like you, everyone has fears and doubts about doing God’s will. Fear never comes from God, but from evil spirits who are busy trying to lure us away from the Lord, and His path of righteousness.

1) Pray for God’s guidance. Don’t wait or hesitate to answer God’s call.

2) Start going to Mass every week. Make an appointment to talk with a priest. Tell him you want to become Catholic. Do whatever he tells you. If he invites you to join RCIA, attend the classes. Even if you’re living “in sin” start attending classes, anyway. You don’t have to make an immediate commitment to be baptized. Jesus came to save sinners. That means you, me … and every person on earth.

3) Surrender to God. Don’t worry about how becoming a Catholic will change your life. God has the perfect solution to every problem you face. Simply surrender your heart to God, and let Him caress you with His loving care. God will give you all the grace you need to become Catholic.

Be assured that I am praying for you. Please let me know what happens on your faith journey.

In Christ’s Love,

Alice

*****

Doug Lawrence adds: One of the most practical benefits of being Catholic is to be able to confess one’s sins, in and through the great Sacrament of Reconciliation, no matter how bad they might be … and receive immediate, absolute assurance of God’s forgiveness, grace, and inestimable love.

That shouldn’t be surprising, since one of the very first things Jesus did after rising again from the dead, was to give the apostles (and their duly ordained successors) the power to forgive sins … something which had, until that moment … been reserved to God, alone:

As the Father hath sent me, I also send you. When he had said this, he breathed on them; and he said to them: Receive ye the Holy Spirit. Whose sins you shall forgive, they are forgiven them (John 20:21-23)

Dreaming about Jesus calling you to become Catholic is totally biblical, since it was one of the things that was prophesied in the Old Testament of the Bible, and later confirmed by Saint Peter and others, in the New Testament scriptures.

I would definitely “go” with that!

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Happy Thanksgiving to all!

Bishop Morlino of Madison,WI sets the record straight on a number of critical issues

I cannot pass over the actions of the Catholic Health Association and an organization called Network, a lobby of American religious Sisters, who said, quite publicly, that what the bishops have taught is false. They said that the legislation does provide an adequate framework for a Catholic to follow his or her conscience about abortion. So, we had a trade organization — the Catholic Health Association — which calls itself “Catholic” and we had religious Sisters who call themselves Catholic, saying, “Sorry, bishops, you got it wrong, here is the teaching of the Church.”

The Lord Jesus Christ, unworthy though the bishops are, called the bishops to lead the people in faith; He did not call anybody in the Catholic Health Association and he did not call any of the Sisters in Network. To boot, those Sisters who signed the Network document said that they speak for 59,000 American Sisters — that would be every last Sister in the U.S. Yet, another grouping of Sisters came out publicly expressing their disagreement with Network. Unfortunately, the claim that these Sisters in Network represent all Sisters is actually what is false, not the teaching of the bishops.

And, of course, people like Speaker Pelosi could not do enough to wave the letter from the Catholic Health Association and the letter from Network to provide cover for Democratic legislators who wanted to waffle in protecting innocent human life. Speaker Pelosi is not called by Jesus Christ to lead the Catholic faithful, any more than the religious Sisters in Network are, any more than the leadership of the Catholic Health Association is.

The bishops are called to teach, sanctify, and govern. But, as I said before, with regard to the Holy Father, if people will not recognize authority, then they cannot lay responsibility at the feet of those to whom they are disobedient. The pope and the bishops are only responsible when their authority is accepted. The then-Cardinal Ratzinger himself has said, in our contemporary world, the word “obedience” has disappeared from our vocabulary and the reality of obedience has been anathematized.

In this way, very serious harm is being done to the Church because people in the Church wonder, “Who speaks for Christ? Does the Catholic Health Association speak for Christ? Does Network, an organization of religious Sisters, speak for Christ? Do they teach with the authority of the bishops? Is the bishops’ teaching just another opinion?”

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