September 23, 2005

Serra Club Vocations Essay: Priests, brothers and sisters provide models to live by

By Jennifer Prickel

“Go and bear fruit, fruit that will last” (Jn 15:16).

Jesus speaks plainly in this passage, letting us know that we are to be active members of his mystical body.

Just a few verses before, he proclaimed that he is the vine and we are the branches. God will throw those who do not bear fruit into the fire. We cannot bear fruit unless we remain in God, meaning that we follow his commands.

We have been taught that God has a special love for each of us. It is this love that must be the driving force in our lives, pushing us to strive for holiness, the fullness of truth and a deep yearning to carry out God’s will.

Through the actions of priests, brothers and sisters, the people of God have models to live their lives by and a source to go to when questions are brought up.

Priests are incredibly important to our Church. Without them, we would be without the sacraments. Many would not be baptized. Confirmation and the anointing of the sick would not be administered.

Priests give us a connection with Jesus by allowing us to receive Jesus physically. They act as representatives of Christ in the confessional, allowing us to apologize for our sins and to gain the mercy of God.

Most importantly, priests consecrate bread and wine into the body and blood of our Lord. Jesus said that he would be with us until the end of time. Through the eucharistic presence of our Lord, this promise is fulfilled.

Brothers and sisters are also extremely important to our Church. They offer prayers of thanksgiving, reparation and petitions.

These people go out and teach and endure intense mortifications to comfort the grieving heart of Jesus. Their love of God and the effort they put forth in order to gain holiness are excellent examples for God’s people.

Priests, brothers and sisters are in special communion with the Lord. They set an example for the rest of the world, preaching the Gospel not only with their words, but also with their actions.

Each group has their specific duties allotted to them by the Father. Through the absolute joy they radiate in their everyday tasks, they witness to the love of the Father.

(Jennifer Prickel and her parents, Steve and Amy Prickel, are members of St. Anthony of Padua Parish in Morris. She graduated last spring from East Central High School in St. Leon and was the 12th grade division winner in the 2005 Serra Club Vocations Essay Contest.) †


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