"Say Yes to the dream of God": Eusebio Hernández, Augustinian Recollect, invites on National Radio of Spain to pray for vocations
In Spain there are close to 70,000 religious men and women , 18,000 of them priests. Their work goes far beyond the parishes: we find them in schools, prisons, soup kitchens, hospitals ... But the progressive aging and the lack of new vocations itendangers their work.
That's why Catholic organizations ask young people to say Yes to the religious vocation . This morning is with us Eusebio Hernández Sola , who is a member of the Vocational Pastoral in the Episcopal Commission of Seminars and Universities of the Spanish Episcopal Conference . He is also bishop of Tarazona.
MONSIGNOR HERNÁNDEZ SOLA, GOOD MORNING. WHAT NUMBER OF RELIGIOUS PERSONS HAVE BEEN LOST IN THE LAST YEARS IN SPAIN?
It has been a great lost, we are currently around 70,000 between priests, religious, sisters, contemplative life, nuns and monks ...
There are several reasons that can give motivation to this great lost. The big descent of childbirths ... Before families had so many children, nowadays it has decreased a lot. Then we are also in a society that lives in a continuous change ; one of them is that it stays only with the tangible , with what you can touch, while it does not tends to risk for something that is harder to savor humanly, as to how accept and welcome this vocation.
Even so, I believe that we have vocations, they continue to enter seminaries and religious life, we must not be too pessimistic.
SHORTAGE OF SEMINARISTS CAN LEAD TO THE LACK OF RELEAF GENERATIONS IN THOUSANDS OF PARISHES, ESPECIALLY IN RURAL SPAIN?
This may happen, but I want to see something providential , we have to reevaluate the laity in the church; until now the religious and priests were in change of everything, now it is important that the layman discover theirimportant roles theyhave in the Church and many of the tasks that up to now the secular priests or the religious did, now the lay people should to do them.
I want to see behind all this, even if it’s painful, the Providence. In the Diocese I can still cover all parish needs; in the communities everyone still has the Eucharist during the weekend , but I believe and encourage priests to reevaluate and give importance to the layman in the Church, because they are Church, the Church is all of us.
THE VOCATIONS THAT ARRIVED FROM LATIN AMERICA, ARE THEY LACKING THIS ABSENCE OF VOCATIONS IN OUR COUNTRY?
It is true that many vocations come from Latin America and Africa , and this helps us, just as we helped at a certain time there, the Church is universal and we shouldn’t to close ourselves to their arrival; It would be better if they arose from our own culture and identity, but if not, also We are open to receive from other cultures .
This day is also focused on the church on the native vocations , that is, vocations that arise in mission territories. We can, through the economic aspect, help those vocations to continue their own vocation and why not, maybe tomorrow, they can also come to help us here, as in the beginning we help them.
The Commission of Seminars and Universities of the Spanish Episcopal Conference serves the following fields: the diocesan seminars, both major and minor, those who elaborate the formation plan, prepares the training, meetings and workshops for the trainers, and prepares the Seminar Day campaign; the diocesan delegations of Vocational Pastoral, encouraging the pastoral of the priestly vocations and the consecrated vocations and preparing the World Day of Prayer for vocations ; the Theological Superior Centers, that is, Faculties of Theology, Centers of Theological Studies of the Seminars and Superior Institutes of Religious Sciences; Catholic Universities in relation to their identity and specifically related to the Pontifical University of Salamanca; and the University Pastoral and the concerning of the pastoral of the culture.
The May 12 of 2019 the Church in Spain he prayed for vocations . " Say Yes to the dream of God " was the motto and challenge which was proposed this year for the World Day of Prayer for Vocations and Day of Native Vocations, organized jointly by the Episcopal Commission of Seminars and Universities, the Spanish Conference of Religious (CONFER), Pontifical Mission Societies (PMS) and the Spanish Conference of Secular Institutes (CEDIS).
To say yes you have to listen to the call , that's why, the Pope Francis , in his message for this Day, he addressed young people:
"Do not be deaf to the Lord's call. If he calls you on this path, do not pick up the oars in the boat and trust him. Do not let yourselves be infected by fear, which paralyzes us before the high peaks that the Lord proposes to us. Always remember that, to those who leave the nets and the boat to follow the Lord, he promises them the joy of a new life, which fills the heart and encourages the journey ".