A good example from Saint Ferdinand III:
St. Ferdinand III was married twice (his first wife Beatrice died after 15 years of marriage) and had a total of 13 children. Two of Ferdinand’s children entered the call to consecrated life. His son Sancho received the Sacrament of Holy Orders and became a priest, he would later serve as Archbishop of Toledo (Spain). His daughter Berengaria took solemn vows, became a nun, and entered a Cistertian convent. It is said that Ferdinand rejoiced at the response of his children to enter their vocations to consecrated life.
Surely it is no stretch to imagine that Saint Ferdinand formed all of his children in a deep understanding of what a vocation is, the varied and specific paths of holiness that God calls us to, and a knowledge of how to prayerfully discern one’s vocation. In order to do this, Ferdinand must have been very well formed in a deep understanding of vocation himself.
How will I apply this? (The Challenge):
Step 1: I will read the following article: Know Who You Are: The Importance of Vocation.
Step 2: I will spend 30 minutes reading through the 53 various paragraphs in the Catechism of the Catholic Church that mention the word “vocation.”
Step 3: I will spend at least 20 minutes in prayer asking God, listening, and pondering the best way to form my children in a deep understanding of vocation.
Step 4: I will write out any concrete fruits from my prayer time and take some appropriate, immediate action.
Some possible results:
- I may better understand the big picture of the relationship between God and man – granting me a more accurate worldview.
- I may experience a new love and energy to live out my vocation of husband and father to the full – filling me with a greater zeal to take action.
- I may gain greater capacity to help my children to embrace their identity as children of God, and temples of the Holy Spirit, in Jesus Christ – blessing them in the greatest way by helping them to find the true treasure worth giving everything for.
Saint Ferdinand III, pray for us!