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Theology for the common man

2 Sunday in Ordinary Time B Year

Sunday, January 17, 2021

The readings today give us the examples of the calling to God’s service and the ways to recognize it. The calling of the prophet Samuel is exemplar here because it shows how important is the environment in which the future servant of God is raised. It was a religious milieu where the example of life and devotion of the priests played a main role. But first of all, it is the grace of God, which after a while starts to be visible in form of the voice of conscience. It is exactly this environment of the temple that formed the future statesman and the servant of God, Samuel. The calling of the apostles was formed in different way. They were called by Jesus himself in different moments and situations of their life. First were called two disciples (Andrew and his brother Peter) of John the Baptist. When they heard about Jesus and received his special invitation to follow Him, they decided to leave their previous master and follow Jesus. It is very interesting the humble attitude of John the Baptist, who seeing himself unable to give to his disciples more education and spiritual formation allowed them to follow Jesus, and to let them rise in source of holiness. On those two examples of the calling to the service of God we can see how important a step in the history of the XV century Church was creating of the spiritual seminaries and how substantial they were and are in the closeness of the children and youth to an ecclesial environment. We see them as the altar servers or members of many pastoral youth groups who started to know God’s service and in due time they decide to choose God’s voice in their conscience as their way of life. As is seen, the best guarantee of the calling to God’s service is to be close to Jesus from the beginning of life and to point out the importance of raising the children in a religious environment. It has to be emphasized, that the role of Christian parents, in taking care about religious education and formation of their children, the devotion and practice of Christian virtues. St Paul adds also the spiritual discipline properly to each Christian, and especially valid for a candidate to the priesthood, where the purity of mind and body play the main role in correct direction of his vocation: “Do you know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own? For you have been purchased at a price. Therefore glorify God in your body”. Keeping this spiritual direction guarantees us, of an increase of vocations to the priesthood and its better quality. It is good to remember that today we are facing a shortage of vocation to the service of God.