March 5, 2010

‘Race for Vocations’ team member seeks to hear God’s call in life

By Sean Gallagher

“Do you not know that the runners in the stadium all run in the race, but only one wins the prize? Run so as to win” (1 Cor 9:24).

St. Paul directed these words 2,000 years ago to the fledgling Church in Corinth, Greece.

But they also describe the situation of Missy Brassie.

This 22-year-old member of St. John the Evangelist Parish in Indianapolis will be running in the One America 500 Mini-Marathon on May 8 in Indianapolis.

She will be doing it as part of the “Race for Vocations” team, a group of runners and walkers participating in the Mini-Marathon and its accompanying Finish Line 500 Festival 5K. (Related story: ‘Race for Vocations’ expands to include Evansville Diocese)

The team members will wear T-shirts that encourage the tens of thousands of other participants in the Mini-Marathon and 5K, and the thousands that will line the race courses to consider how God has given them and every person a vocation and has called them to holiness.

That in itself would make Brassie’s being on the “Race for Vocations” team special. But there is something that adds even more depth to this for her.

For Brassie, the “imperishable crown” that she is trying to win is the knowledge of her own vocation (1 Cor 9:25). She is currently discerning if God might be calling her to religious life.

While the race will have deep meaning for her, she is also a little bit scared about having to run 13 miles.

“It’s my first time doing anything this long,” Brassie said. “[It’s] definitely scary. I’m not really a runner, but I’ll kind of learn how to be one.”

She knows that she will get support from her fellow team members and others who will come out on May 8 to cheer on the “Race for Vocations” team.

This support reminds her that she is not alone in her discernment.

“Seeing all of the people that come out for it to support and cheer you on—it’s a great metaphor of how we have all these little supporters along our race of life,” Brassie said. “It actually makes me think of the communion of the saints, of how the people in heaven are cheering for us, too, and are praying for us and asking us to continue on, to persevere, because they’ve walked it, too.”

Brassie also knows that, behind the cheers, there is an even greater support—prayer.

“Prayer is a lot more powerful than any of us know,” she said. “So praying while I run and just asking others to pray in light of my running is a big deal. I think it’s the only thing that’s going to get me through the Mini.” †

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