Promote vocations in your family

Fostering Vocations in the Home

Parents can have different outlooks on vocations in their families. Some might be actively seeking and praying that their son or daughter pursue a religious vocation; others might be a little fearful if one of their children shows interest in becoming a priest or sister.

The truth is that God has a plan for each of us, and each of our children. He wants them to be happy even more than we do! Just as you can’t “give” a child a vocation to a particular state in life, neither should you try to stand in the way of His plans for them. Discovering and living out their vocations is really where they will find their fulfillment and happiness.

Here are a few resources that can help you learn more about vocations and encourage your children to ask themselves, and God, the questions that really matter so they can discover His plan for their lives.

Seven Ways Families Can Foster Vocations

The ABCs of Fostering Vocations

What if my daughter wants to enter the convent?

For Parents of Arlington Seminarians

We also encourage you to visit the Pray for Vocations page, where there are many prayers you can use.

The Arlington Catholic Herald recently ran a story on the vocations in the Van de Voorde family of All Saints Parish. 

Bishop Emeritus Paul Loverde on praying for vocations in the family

“I want to ask you, dear sisters and brothers, to pray for vocations to the priesthood and consecrated life in a very particular way. I am not asking you to pray for vocations in general, for example, “Dear God, please choose someone, like the person next door.” Rather, I am inviting you to pray this way: “Dear God, if you will, please choose someone from my family – my family – to be a priest, sister or brother. And if you do, I will support that person with my prayers and encouragement.” Admittedly, this is a more difficult prayer because it reaches the heart of each family. But it is also a more generous prayer and God responds to generosity!” Bishop Emeritus Paul Loverde

If your son is (or is thinking about being) a seminarian for the Diocese of Arlington, this page has more information for you.


Why is it important for parents to foster vocations among their children?

By presenting their children to the Lord at Baptism, Christian parents are requesting that He make them holy as He is holy. Only through faithfulness to Him in the particular vocation which He chooses for them, will their children love Him and serve Him as He desires.

Foster vocations in families RC

Why is it difficult for some parents to foster their children’s vocations?

It is hard sometimes to remember that our children are God’s gift to us and that our primary role is to help God reveal His plan of love for them. We tend to hold fast to our own “plans” for them, hoping for their best preparation for living independently from us as adults. Surely it is a parent’s responsibility to provide their children with the best education and career training possible, but we must remember that a VOCATION is NOT a CAREER. It is a way of living and loving the Lord and others according to His most providential choice. It is THE MEANS of SANCTIFICATION ESPECIALLY CHOSEN for them through which they will glorify Him most perfectly.

What are some ways to help my children value their unique vocation from the Lord?

LIVE your faith!

BE faithful to your own vocation to marriage!

PRAY with your children for vocations!

ADORE the Blessed Sacrament together!

HELP them find their own words for asking Jesus to lead them to their vocation!

TEACH them how to serve others joyfully and generously!

MODEL a spirit of determination to please God in all you do!

SHOW esteem for the priests and religious who serve in your parish!

TALK about the lives of the saints!

ENTRUST them to the Blessed Virgin Mary!