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Pope's death inspires vocations


The UK's first large-scale advertising campaign for the priesthood is about to be launched, as it seeks to mobilise the young masses who mourned the death of Pope John Paul II.

The London Daily Telegraph reports that youth workers are also using an alternative 18-to-30s festival to help shore up lay interest following the death of the "young people's pope".

The advertising campaign, "Get collared for the challenge of a lifetime", will run on the London Underground during the northern summer, and could extend across the country.

Beer mats carrying the same message will be distributed at youth festivals and in chaplaincies.

Fr Paul Embery, director of the National Office for Vocation, an agency of the Catholic Bishops of England and Wales, said: "We recognise that following the death of the Holy Father there has been an increase in interest in priesthood and the Church generally. We are trying to develop that into something more long term."

The agency Catholic Youth Services is planning an 18-to-30s festival in Birmingham next year. Its director, Helen Bardy, said: "We want to reach out to young people in the fantastic way that Pope John Paul II did, at a time when feeling about his teaching is strong."

Fr Embery said: "Previously we have only advertised within the Church. By taking the campaign into other areas of young people's lives, we are hoping it will give them something to think about and keep the interest high."

The death of the pope on 2 April prompted a significant increase in the number of vocation inquiries in Britain. Website inquiries about the priesthood and other religious orders more than doubled to 846 last month.

SOURCE
Pope's death inspires would-be priests (London Telegraph 23/5/05)

LINKS (not necessarily endorsed by Church Resources)
National Office for Vocation
Vocation Events
Catholic Vocations Ministry Australia
Catholic Vocations, Archdiocese of Melbourne
Vocation, Archdiocese of Brisbane

MORE STORIES
Ireland attracts overseas zeal as priest numbers fall (Reuters 23/5/05)
Catholic church launches recriutment drive for priesthood (PersonnelToday.com 23/5/05)
Pope's death inspires would-be priests (London Telegraph 23/5/05)
Opus Dei Prelate Ordains 42 Priests (Zenit 22/5/05)


24 May 2005