Archbishop's Appeal

The Archbishop’s Appeal is the annual fundraising campaign that provides supplemental financial assistance to institutions, programs and ministries affiliated with the Catholic Church throughout the Archdiocese of San Antonio.

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Life Awareness 2018

Life Awareness 2018

God has made each one of us for a purpose in this life. The Life Awareness Retreat is designed to help you become aware of the reason for your life, your God-given vocation.

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Events Calendar 2017-2018

Events Calendar 2017-2018

Get the calendar of events for this year's vocation activities. Make copies for your ministers, post it anywhere it would be helpful, and keep a copy for yourself.

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Pokémon Go – for Christ

Fr. Praveen Lakkisetti

Newly ordained priest for the Archdiocese

Parochial Vicar of Prince of Peace, San Antonio

More than anything else, the summer of 2016 was marked for one thing: the boom of ‘Pokémon Go.’ It was like a storm that swept the entire digital and media world, as people from all walks of life came to know about this free-to-play, location-based reality game, developed by Niantic for the users of iOS and Android devises. People kept walking long distances and they knew not how far they walked, drove to new destinations in the desire to catch more and more Pokémon. Apart from securing huge profits for Nintendo company, people came to know about new hangout spots, and realized that they could do it – to catch Pokémon. People invested time, energy and a sacrificed a great deal of their personal preferences to search for Pokémon. The Pokémon revolution reminded me about the ‘thirst’ people have about something ‘new,’ something that is ‘attractive’ and ‘innovative.’ The same ‘newness,’ ‘attraction,’ and ‘innovation,’ could be found if one is able to identify and discover where one’s THIRST for life is, namely the ‘vocation’ of one’s life.

In fact, I wasn’t one playing the Pokémon, but I was doing my summer ministry with another seminarian, who did search for Pokémon, and he is now a priest. In our time together, catching Pokémon, I told him how it would look if the spirit of Pokémon could be incorporated into the ministry of Vocations and in a person’s vocational journey and discovery. What if all young people invested their time, resources and energy into a deeper search for ‘something’ that would give them a profound meaning for life – the new, attractive and innovative. God calls each person according to the degree of response that one gives to God’s invitation. For some, the Call of God could be very evident very early in life, while for other it might strike after a considerably long time. Whether a person receives the Call early or later in life, it is an invitation that God extends to a person to respond in freedom, and discern and discover through prayer, as to what one is called to do and invest in with life.

One of the best biblical narratives that could help in a person’s vocational journey would certainly be Jesus’ encounter with the Samaritan woman at the well as presented in the Gospel of John 4:4-26. More than anything else, the encounter of Jesus with the Samaritan woman highlights God’s nature to reach out to a person and assist him or her to respond to the ‘thirst’ with love and joy. It outlines the series of events that could help a person to eliminate fear, estrangement and embrace the Call to Discipleship with joy. The fact that a person is called by God, and the capacity to respond to such an invitation of love forms the foundation for Discipleship. While God extends invitation to all, it is nurtured and grown thought one’s capacity to love, and through a joyful embrace of Discipleship. The key is in discovering one’s ‘thirst’ and to quench it by responding lovingly and joyfully. Such a discovery could lead a person to the Priesthood, religious/consecrated life, a vocation to married or single life. Unlike the Pokémon’s search that made a person to discover ONLY new hubs and destinations, my/your response to Christ’s invitation could lead us to discover new avenues to love and to serve God and the Church joyfully, through the gift of Vocation. So, discover your vocation, find your joy, quench your thirst, set the world on fire with a Discipleship of love.

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