“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
Students will engage in conversation, presentation, and discernment about vocation within their faith community.
Students will learn about vocation – how God has a plan for their lives and how they can begin to identify that plan.
Student leaders will hear from various alumni, community adults who speak to their own vocational calls.
Students will affirm gifts and talents in others.
Students will reflect on their own gifts and begin early discernment work.
David F. White, Practicing Discernment with Youth: A Transformative Youth Ministry Approach. (Pilgrim Press, 2005).
David F White, Dreamcare: A Theology of Youth, Spirit, and Vocation. (Wipf and Stock Publishers, 2013).
Gather [5 minutes]
Greeting One Another:
Introducing the Session:
Define vocation, a good resource comes from http://www.frederickbuechner.com/ :
“IT COMES FROM the Latin vocare, to call, and means the work a man is called to by God.
There are all different kinds of voices calling you to all different kinds of work, and the problem is to find out which is the voice of God rather than of Society, say, or the Super-ego, or Self-Interest.
By and large a good rule for finding out is this. The kind of work God usually calls you to is the kind of work (a) that you need most to do and (b) that the world most needs to have done. If you really get a kick out of your work, you’ve presumably met requirement (a), but if your work is writing TV deodorant commercials, the chances are you’ve missed requirement (b). On the other hand, if your work is being a doctor in a leper colony, you have probably met requirement (b), but if most of the time you’re bored and depressed by it, the chances are you have not only bypassed (a) but probably aren’t helping your patients much either.
Neither the hair shirt nor the soft berth will do. The place God calls you to is the place where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.”
– Originally published in Wishful Thinking
Engage [30 minutes]
Activity 1: Introducing the Presenters
Activity 2: Q&A
Allow time for students to ask questions and for conversation following the panel presentation.
Reflect [20 minutes]
Activity 3: Vocational Affirmations
Activity 4: Small Group Discussions
After the cardstock is full of comments, break into small groups and read what was affirmed, discuss what surprised them, what affirms their own vocational aspirations, any comments or reflections from the speakers’ stories.
Send Forth [5 minutes]
This resource includes supplementary materials:
Introduction for Leaders