Today the Church celebrates Laity Sunday, a time which is coupled with World Mission Sunday next week. One might ask what these two have in common. Pope Francis has asked all of us to live out our vocation in the world.
The vocation of the laity, all those who are not clergy, have a special mission in the Church to be like leaven, by bringing the spirit of the Gospel into the world as witness’ of faith, hope and love.
When we are centered in Jesus, we are called to bring the Gospel into our workplace, and to our social and family lives. As Christians, this may seem obvious, but honestly, are the many social and charitable works we take part in, outside and within the Church, done with the Lord in mind? Love
The Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Christ, transforms hearts when we put Him in the center of all our activities. The Church designates this day to remind us of this calling as the “People of God.” St. John Henry Newman once said this while speaking about the vocation of the laity:
“For in truth we are not called once
only, but many times; all through our
life Christ is calling us. He called us first
in baptism; but afterwards also…. He
works through our natural faculties and
circumstances of life. Still, what happens
to us in Providence is in all essential
respects what His voice was to those
whom He addressed when on earth.”
The special character that is designated to the vocation and role of the family is love. The mission of every family is to guard, reveal and communicate love, and at its core be a living reflection of God’s love for humanity. Through God’s mysterious design, it was in a family that the Son of God spent many of his early years. The Holy Family is therefore the prototype, an example for all Christian families. Our specific calling as the laity is unique, because our founder is God the Father, our leader is Jesus Christ and the source of our strength is the Holy Spirit. We live by the law and way of love, and if we remain faithful to God and seek first the kingdom of God, we together in love can change the world.