I have worked as a Vocations Director for over a year and I have seen some truly creative ways of promoting vocations to the priesthood and religious life. But never have I thought that someone would actually use dolls as vocations promotion tools.
I think using huggable dolls to foster vocations among the young is actually cool. And this is not an entirely novel idea. Dolls have been around since the dawn of civilization and they’ve been used for various purposes. Ancient cultures used dolls in their religious ceremonies and rituals. Modern armed forces use Military dolls to promote Forces careers to children. There are also dolls that are specifically made to promote friendship, character and community. So why not use dolls to encourage the young to enter the seminary?
Weebelievers.com offer vocation dolls that are designed “to give little boys and little girls an inside look into the lives of real-life priests and Religious Sisters.” Each doll comes with a companion booklet “featuring the vocation stories of five priests and five Religious Sisters.” The goal of the founders of weebelievers.com is to expose “children to toys that reflect the nature of consecrated life and introduce them to the possibility of a religious calling in early childhood.”
TV Maria, a Catholic Filipino TV channel, will air a video documentary I recently made for the Diocese of San Jose in Nueva Ecija. The thirty-minute docu is simply titled “Diocese of San Jose” and it depicts the extraordinary and inspiring life of the clergy and laity of the diocese.
I was commissioned to write, direct and edit the video in time for the 25th anniversary of the diocese. Here are some screenshots from the video:
That’s Fr. Remigio Malgapo. He regularly says Mass in the San Jose City Jail. But his prison ministry goes beyond celebrating the Eucharist. He also provides legal assistance and livelihood projects for the inmates and for their families. Continue reading
Being active in social networks like Facebook is a good way for vocation promoters to attract potential aspirants to the priesthood and religious life nowadays. A good example is Sister Tracy Dugas, who has been using Facebook “to make herself accessible to those contemplating a commitment to Jesus Christ.”
Most of the more than 39 million Facebook members worldwide are students, so vocation promoters will miss a lot if they don’t make good use of this technology to support and promote vocations. Recent studies show that 60% of the members log in daily and spend an average of 19 minutes per day on Facebook. I am sure that among those millions of people who log in to Facebook everyday, a good number of them are discerning to respond to God’s call to priesthood or religious life.
Vocation promoters need to be where young people are. And for now this means that aside from promoting vocations in churches and schools, they need to be actively present in social networking websites like Facebook.