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 | Father Kyle Ratuiste

Vocations Come From Families

Dear Fellow Disciples,

Every Christmas, we celebrate God’s coming into our world. He chose a very specific avenue to make His entrance—the family. It was within the Holy Family that the Word Made Flesh was born into the world and the young Jesus “increased in wisdom and in stature, and in favor with God and man.” (Lk 2:52) When Christ performed His first miraculous sign, it was at the behest of his Blessed Mother. (see Jn 2:3)

Just as God brought salvation into the world through the Holy Family, God raises up holy vocations through families today. While some priests have pursued their call over the opposition of their families, many—myself included—identify their families as instrumental to their vocation.

Looking at my own experience, I recognize that God planted the seed of my vocation through the actions of my family. After all, my parents were the ones who presented me for baptism. Through that sacrament, I began my Christian pursuit of holiness, which has taken on particular shape in my priesthood.

God nourished my vocation through my family. My parents sacrificed for me to receive 14 years of Catholic education in Pasco. More importantly, they taught and modeled a life of prayer, reinforcing my ability to trust in God.

Lastly, my family mirrored God’s love for me at key moments in my vocational journey. My application to enter seminary was especially crucial, and I believe my family’s balanced support—neither engaging in naysaying nor immediately ordering ordination invitations—created a space where I could say “yes” to God’s invitation with freedom and confidence.

My family and the Catholic ministries we encounter set the stage for my vocation, so I am excited to share a return to my roots as I promote vocations. Over the weekend of Oct. 12-13, I visited St. Vincent de Paul Parish in Connell, the church of my baptism. I spoke with their religious education students and preached on vocations in English and Spanish. Later this month, I will make a vocations visit to my hometown of Pasco. Other vocation visits to additional parishes are also in the works.

As we prepare to celebrate our Savior’s arrival through a family, let us pray for the many families of our diocese. May God bless them to be the privileged places where holy vocations are planted, nourished, and encouraged.

In Christ,

Fr. Ratuiste