Pope Francis’ message for the World Day of Prayer for Vocations, April 17

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

It is my great hope that, during the course of this Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy, all the baptised may experience the joy of belong- ing to the Church and rediscover that the Christian vocation, just like every particu- lar vocation, is born from within the People of God, and is a gift of divine mercy. The Church is the house of mercy, and it is the “soil” where vocations take root, mature and bear fruit. For this reason, on the occasion of the 53rd World Day of Prayer for Vocations, I invite all of you to reflect upon the apostolic community, and to give thanks for the role of the community in each person’s voca- tional journey.
In the Bull of Indiction for the Extraordi- nary Jubilee of Mercy, I recalled the words of the venerable St Bede, describing the call of St Matthew: “Miserando atque eligendo” (Misericordiae Vultus, 8). The Lord’s mer- ciful action forgives our sins and opens us to the new life which takes shape in the call to discipleship and mission. Each vocation in the Church has its origin in the compas- sionate gaze of Jesus. Conversion and voca- tion are two sides of the same coin, and con- tinually remain interconnected throughout the whole of the missionary disciple’s life.