“The harvest is rich but the labourers are few…pray therefore the Lord of the harvest to send labourers to his harvest.” ( Mt. 9: 37-38)
These words of Jesus in the gospel of Matthew transpired St Annibale Ma. Di Francia while at meditation. He felt that such a prayer was the best means to work a “greater good in the holy Church, to save many souls…” (RA p. 36). The prayer became the Charism of the Institutes of the Daughters of Divine Zeal and the Rogationists of the Heart of Jesus which he founded.
We the Spiritual children of St. Annibale have the fourth vow: the zeal for the “Rogate” (prayer). Each day we are praying to Jesus to win numerous holy priests and workers for the holy Church, for the people and the nations of the world. To win holy vocations for the seminaries, the religious orders and the dioceses. To spread this prayer in compliance with the divine command and to be workers of the mystical harvest.
In my previous assignment in the Philippines, there were many opportunities to meet young couples, single mothers, youths, and seminarians with which we exchanged vocation stories and gave them encouragement. Every time I met a person who had a vocation to the priesthood or religious life I usually said, “You are the fruit of our prayers, thank you. Persevere in your vocation and be at the service of God through our brothers and sisters one day.” They usually responded, “Thank you Sister, yes, I need your prayers for my perseverance”.
I would like to share a note from a seminarian (now in his theological studies) which accompanied the prayer book he gave to me recently. In his note he said: “Kindly accept this simple gift as a sign of gratitude for your motherly love and support. Thank you very much for being part of my seminary journey. I am sure we are always united in prayers. Take care always! You are indeed one of the greatest gifts from God”. I am very grateful to God for the chance to inspire young people to persevere in their vocation. I did not realize that in one way or the other some are touched by a motherly love. Father Annibale, our Founder, said in one of his writings “the Daughters of Divine Zeal are considered the mother of the priests” (Rogationist Anthology).
It is interesting to realize that God touches each one of us to be an instrument to inspire other people even with our smiles, presence or just simple words. My friends, please join me in moving on in our little ways to inspire others from all walks of life. Let us first persevere in the love, hope and trust of God and be witnesses of His love.
Image courtesy of turnbacktogod.com