Vocation is, you could say, what’s left when all the games have stopped. It’s that elusive residue that we are here to discover, and to help one another discover.

Rowan Williams in A Ray of Darkness: Sermons and Reflections (1995)

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You are the body of Christ and parts of each other. In the church, God has appointed first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then gifts of healing, the ability to help others, leadership skills, different kinds of tongues. All aren’t apostles, are they? All aren’t prophets, are they? All aren’t teachers, are they? All don’t perform miracles, do they? All don’t have gifts of healing, do they? All don’t speak in different tongues, do they? All don’t interpret, do they?

1 Corinthians 12:27-30

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In his Rule for Monasteries, Saint Benedict describes a number of different positions within the monastery: the superior, who is the leader; the novice, who is learning the community’s traditions; the cellarer, who makes sure that the cupboards are stocked; the guest master, who makes all guests feel at home; and the monastics, who live and work and pray together in the monastery. Today’s guest master might be yesterday’s cellarer. Today’s novice might be tomorrow’s superior.

Just as God so generously calls us to our own vocations in the world, so too does God generously give the gifts we need in order to most fully live out those callings. If we are called to marriage, God gives us the gifts necessary to be a good spouse. If we are called to a particular occupation – no matter what kind – God gives us the gifts necessary to be the best plumber or teacher or machinist or priest we can be. Our work is to hear the call and respond joyfully to the gifts.

Columba Maynus

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God, you have called me to be of service to and in relationship with your people. By discerning the gifts you’ve given me, help me to discern the unique shape of my calling. Amen.

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Go, a disciple, called and sent.

Go, a disciple, equipped for justice.

Go, a disciple blessed

in the strong name of God:

one holy and undivided Trinity.


Columba Maynus

Brother Columba Maynus is a Benedictine monk in the Episcopal Church. He serves as Community Engagement Coordinator at Saint Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and is a charter member and Gospel Catalyst of the Academy of Preachers.

The Need To

Josh Ritter

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