SAGINAW — During the annual dinner banquet to support seminarian education, Bishop Robert Gruss boldly proclaimed that there is not a shortage of vocations in the Diocese of Saginaw.
“In this diocese, we do not have a shortage of vocations,” Bishop Gruss said. “We only have a shortage of people who are responding to God’s call.
“The Lord provides everywhere; there are plenty of vocations in this diocese. You and I … we have to call them forth and support them.”
Sharing his own vocation story, which included an invitation to get involved in his parish as a young adult, Bishop Gruss highlighted the power of a personal invitation.
“Never underestimate the power of an invitation,” Bishop Gruss said. “Because the Lord uses your voice and he uses my voice, as His instrument in this invitation. One invitation changed my life.”
Looking out on the more than 300 people gathered, Bishop Gruss posed the question, “Have you ever thought of yourself as a vocation recruiter?”
He explained that a vocation recruiter is someone who personally invites another to consider a vocation to the priesthood or consecrated life.
“It is the role of every baptized Catholic to be whom the Lord has called you to be through your baptism … and that is a vocation recruiter.”
Expressing his deep gratitude for all senior priests who generously serve the Diocese, Bishop Gruss asked who would take their places once they are no longer able to engage in full-time ministry.
“They’re going to come from the invitations which you are going to start extending to the people in your communities. That’s where they’re going to come from. Identify young men who have qualities that you would like to see in your priest, and then tell them that and invite them to consider it. That’s it. Invitations bring results.”
Bishop Gruss also encouraged daily prayer and fasting for vocations. He suggested we ask each day: “Lord Jesus, open the heart and mind of a young man today, that he might answer your call.”