God calling

October 23, 2017

Focus 11 Call to Holiness is an annual event hosted by the Diocese of Orlando Office of Vocations for Catholic middle and high school students throughout the diocese.

In the past, all students attended the same Focus 11 day. This is the second year that 11th grade classes are being addressed separately, beginning with Father Lopez in Daytona Beach on Oct. 23. High school Campus Ministers have taken the lead role in the planning and executing of the retreats.

According to coordinator Darcey Dinh, the vocations office was “…encouraged by Bishop Noonan to explore better ways to reach the 11th graders. We divided the FOCUS 11 event in order to create a more intimate experience for 11th graders to have with representatives from priesthood, religious life, marriage, and the single life as well as to engage in more conversation about discipleship and where God is calling them.”

This effort corresponds with results of the 2017 CARA Report put out by Georgetown University’s Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate. The reports states that the typical age ordinands first considered responding to a vocation to priesthood or religious was about 16 years old. The report also states that on average, ordinands were encouraged by an average of four individuals to consider a vocation to priesthood.

Religious, priests, and seminarians from throughout the diocese came to share their vocation stories as well as a married couple providing students with an opportunity to open their hearts and listen to God’s will for their lives.