BY SISTER LUCY KEARNEY
Regi-Notre Dame Catholic High School took advantage of the Feast of St. Marguerite Bourgeois to host a Vocation Day.
As we arrived at the school Grade 11 students were assigned to greet the invited guests, and I must add, made us feel very welcome. After a few minutes of conversation, we proceeded to the auditorium where the band was filling the room with excellent music selections. A memorial table in honour of Archbishop Meagher, reminded all of us of his great love of and faith in the goodness of young people. Archbishop Meagher would truly have been pleased with the program that followed.
Mary Elaine Carty, co-ordinator of pastoral services, welcomed representatives from the Congregation of Notre-Dame, the Religious Hospitallers of St. Joseph, Sisters of Providence of St. Vincent de Paul, Franciscan and Jesuit priests, and Permanent Deacons and their wives. Friar Dan Quackenbush, chaplain, was presider for the beautifully planned Liturgy of the Word Service. The involvement of students in the music lead by the band and members of the school choir, the liturgical dance, and proclaiming the Word and intercessions was an uplifting experience for all present. Throughout the celebration, the students listened attentively as Father Rod McNeil, Vocation Director for the archdiocese, Sr. Sue Kidd, cnd and Deacon John and Jocelyn Ezard spoke of their call to priesthood, consecrated life, marriage and the role of lay deacons in the Church. Each reminded us that through baptism we have a special call. All were encouraged to reflect and discern how God may be inviting them to carry out their baptismal call not only as students but in the future. It is amazing how much history, spirituality, apostolic activities, and love of the church was shared during this prayer service.
Following the prayer service we were assigned classrooms to visit and briefly speak about and answer questions re: our respective vocations. Sr. Barbara Thiffault and I spoke of our founding in Kingston, our specific charism as SP’s, briefly of our own journey to and within the Sisters of Providence, and the present ministries and involvement of the Sisters of Providence.
Barbara and I are most grateful to the staff and students of Regi-Notre Dame for the invitation to participate in this vocation culture experience. I believe that seeing women and men speak about their various journeys in carrying out their baptismal calls was a faith-filled time not only for the students but also for the presenters.