Vocational Letters – March, 2018

«…The Cordimarian Missionary have an experience of God as Father forming us with the anointed Christ and sent to save humanity within a missionary community in the style of the Apostles…»

«…Like Mary in our heart, we welcome with prompt and unconditional docility the Word in an attitude of listening and acceptance to share and celebrate…» (Constitutions MCM, 5)

These two paragraphs of our Constitution express part of our charism and from the first years of formation until now, I confirm my vocation in this style of life. It is a call that made me stand up so as to carry out the mission entrusted to many who were resistors like Jonah. It is a cause of joy and celebration because of the merciful embrace from the Father who never tires of loving a child who returns to his call.

The parable of the merciful Father (Lk. 15:1-3, 11-32) wants to show us, once again, the love that God has for us. In the journey of the Church, and the continuous changes that occur in the social, political, cultural and eclesial structures, we are invited during this time of Lent to listen again and again to this parable in which, I am sure should be called «the heart of the Gospel.» In it, Jesus helps us to recognize the heart of a father that never ceases to surprise us because he exceeds all human logic regarding what we believe to be right. Reflecting on this text from the reality of young people, his Word challenges our life and role within the Church. Surely you and I have said or heard that the young people of today is not like any other generation, that young people survive day-to-day and have lost the meaning of life and much of their values, etc.

As my superiors asked me to collaborate in the pastoral care of vocations, I have had the opportunity to interact and share with men and women who though they may be young have taken on some of the responsibilities of their parents. These young people who for economic or other situations have had to take care of the younger members of the family. Some have received much without effort, yet others have been victims of abandonment or have lived in situation where they were robbed of happiness, innocence and at times this has led them to seek out false doors.

In the face of this reality, is the apparent negative attitude of young people, both on part of society, as well as our religious institutes… Could it be that sometimes I see or we see the youth, taking the role of the younger son who demands his inheritance to squander and we take on the role of the eldest son, thinking that we are in compliance and assume the work of the «Father.» Do we «win» because the young brother doesn’t deserve anything? What makes us angry perhaps is this generous love by the Father? Have we lost the ability to see and dare to say that they have no right to return home, let alone express repentance? Placing ourselves in the role of the younger son, young people… What would our attitude be if we tried to return home? In these days of Lent, what would we do if we discover that we have squandered the goods that have been given to us as an inheritance?

Let us ask God, the Father-Mother, in this time of grace and conversión, that we may discover, recognize and accept God’s unconditional love. Since we have received everything from the Father, we also need to appreciate and to be willing to move out of our confort zone so as to reach out to young people and share quality time with them.

May we feel loved by our Father in heaven, who always is waiting for us with open arms as we saw in the younger son and that he wants us to partake of the feast as the older son. We are encourage and invited to come to the feast of Passover, which the Father has prepared for us.

Sr. Aquilina José José, MCM

Pastoral Care of Vocations. Mexico.