Vocations Lismore is a ministry in the Diocese of Lismore whose main purpose is to help young
people come to know Christ, decide to live as disciples within his Church and discern their calling.

The Meaning of Life
Come! Follow Me!
What is Your Calling?

What Am I Here For?

A conversation about the meaning of life.

Is there more to life than this?

As a child grows up, the most persistent question he or he will tend to ask is ‘why?’ As beings endowed with reason, we not only ask what things are but also why things are. At some stage in one’s life, a human being will ask questions like: Why is the universe here? Why is there something rather than nothing? Why are we here? What is the goal of human life? What is the purpose of our lives? Why is there suffering in the world? Is death the ultimate destiny of human existence? Men and women throughout history have attempted to answer these questions.

For thousands of years, wise men and women have discussed and speculated about the meaning of life. In their discussions on the meaning of life, most of the greatest thinkers have concluded that there is a necessary, eternal and unchanging First Cause, an originating principle which creates and sustains everything. This First Cause is what people naturally call GOD.

We know that God is real, not only because there are convincing reasons for God’s existence, but also God has made himself known to us. With deeds and words, prophecies and miraculous works, God reveals himself and his plan of loving goodness. He made himself known to us by stages until He sent his eternal Son – Jesus Christ. God reveals himself in order to invite us to his friendship, to guide and strengthen us in our journey of life, and ultimately attain eternal happiness in his heavenly kingdom.

What do I really want in life?

People seem to want many different things in life. However, when asked about what we want most deeply, we want happiness that is complete fulfilling, pleasurable and permanent. It is the happiness that comes from a selfless, total self-giving relationship; it results from loving God and our fellow human beings.

Why is it important to know the purpose of my life?

Knowing your purpose gives you a sense of direction and meaning, makes life simple, gives you focus and makes you passionate.

What does Christianity say about the meaning of life?

God is the purpose of all things. God willed you. God made you to be happy. God made you for greatness and to enjoy eternal happiness. Jesus said “I am the way, the truth, the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.” (John 14:1-6)

Come! Follow Me!

The Call to Be a Disciple of Christ

Come and see.

Encounter with Christ which elicits a decision to entrust oneself to him in freedom is the beginning of an active journey of friendship with Christ. It is that moment in a person’s journey of life when God becomes real, and Christ is alive and the Holy Spirit is present, and chooses to enter into personal relationship with God. There are many ways the Lord Jesus uses to make himself known and offer his friendship: “Look, I am standing at the door, knocking. If one of you hears me calling and opens the door, I will come in to share his meal, side by side with him.”(Revelation 3:20) A person’s response to this invitation may start with interest with a positive association with Christ or Christianity, curiosity, openness and active search about God, Christ, the Church. The culmination of this search is a free and explicit decision: to accept Christ’s invitation or to reject it.

Come. Follow Me.

Those who decide to accept Christ’s invitation live as his disciple within his Church, the movement of growing disciples. A disciple is a learner, that is, he or she commits to learn from Christ how to think, make choices, and act. The call to be disciples of Christ comes to us by means of this community. Christ calls us to become members of his Church so that within it, we may grow and reach maturity of faith. Christ entrusted his Church with the fullness of divine truth and the means to be holy. The Church exists to make us saints – disciples who are fully open to God’s grace. The Christian doctrines, the Sacraments especially the Eucharist, the Commandment of love, Christian Prayer are the means to be saints. It is by living as a disciple within the Church that one receives the gift and fulfil duty to become saintly men and women.

Go and make disciples

After a Christian has reached a certain maturity within the Church, the Lord sends him or her to fully share in his mission. The mission the Risen Christ entrusted to his Church is “to make disciples of all nations”(Matthew 28:19) Therefore, all the disciples of Christ “should everywhere on earth bear witness to Christ and give an answer to everyone who asks a reason for the hope of an eternal life which is theirs.” All members of the Church share in this mission, though in various ways. The Christian calling to discipleship and mission are lived out in different settings and states of life.

What is your calling?

God calls.

God calls every human being from nothing to existence. You are not an accident. You are not a product of random chance. God thought you into being. God willed and planned you.

God, the Trinitarian Love, who made you in his image,  “called [you] to existence through love, He called [you] at the same time for love. God inscribed in the humanity of man and woman the vocation, and thus the capacity and responsibility, of love and communion. Love is therefore the fundamental and innate vocation of every human being,” St John Paul II writes.

God calls you to be a disciple of Jesus within His Church so that his love be purified and elevated by Christian Charity – love taught and shown by Jesus, and given as a spiritual gift.

God calls you holiness, the perfection of love. Every Christian is called to be a saint. If is a gift and also a duty to become saint –  to cooperate constantly with God’s grace so that the capacity and gift of live may come to perfection. It is by living as disciples within His Church, being constantly nourished with God’s word and Body of Christ, fulfilling God’s will in the ordinary events of life that you grow in our faith hope and love.

God calls you to perfection of love in the context of your specific vocation: married life, single life, religious life, and priestly life. It is therefore necessary to discern the specific vocation God has given us.

Married Life

Marriage is a vocation in the Church. It is a concrete way of fulfilling the fundamental vocation to love and be a saint. In the context of married life, Christian married couples manifest and grow to holiness by supporting one another in grace all through life with faithful love, being open to the gift of children and training them in Christian faith and morals. They are sent as light to the world, that is, in their work and in the ordinary circumstances of social and family life, they behave according to the Gospel of Jesus Christ and so manifest Christ to others.

Single Life

Being single or unmarried as a layperson is a specific vocation within the Church. It is a state of life in which a person manifests, and grows in the fundamental calling to love. Single lay Christians live their discipleship within the Church using the means Christ gave to his Church including Christian doctrines, the sacraments, the commandment of love and the life of prayer. Like married couples, they are sent as light to the world, that is, in their work and in the ordinary circumstances of social and family life, they behave according to the Gospel of Jesus Christ and so manifest Christ to others.

Religious Life

After a process of discernment and formation, they become members of a religious order or religious congregation like the Franciscans, the Dominicans, the Carmelites, the Missionaries of Charity and so on, through a rite of religious profession. They are called to perfection of Christian love by “practising chastity in celibacy for the sake of the Kingdom, and poverty and obedience.” They live in community and their call to mission is fulfilled by serving God and the people either in contemplative life in the cloister or through active life of apostolic outreach in the most diverse situations of our modern world.

Ordained Life

After a long process of discernment and formation, they receive the sacrament of Holy Orders making them bishops, priests or deacons. Assisted by priests and deacons, the bishops continue the mission of the apostles in the Church. Their call to holiness and mission is lived out in their service for the people by teaching, divine worship and pastoral governance. Thanks to the sacrament of Holy Orders, bishops and priests act in the exercise of their ministry in the name and person of Christ. Deacons minister in the service of word, liturgy and charity.