Daily Reflection
May 9th, 2008

Joan Lanahan

SPAHP, Physical and Occupational Therapy Programs
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When I was growing up, they, priests and religious, talked about and prayed for vocations meaning “to religious and priestly life”. Now at many Catholic, or faith-based universities in the U.S., students and faculties are reflecting on their “vocation”, or call by God, to serve others. Some may be preparing to be doctors, nurses, teachers, pharmacists, physical or occupational therapists, lawyers, even ministers!

Years ago when I mentioned “being called to ministry” to one of my graduate school professors, he told me: “Well, that’s only for church. That’s not for people in the pews and surely not for me.” There’s a change happening in society, religion and spirituality. Knowing one’s “call to service” as an answer to the God question: “Do you love me?” is centuries old. Peter isn’t the only man-woman-person who was/is asked this question by God. Thankfully, now it is being more broadly interpreted.

Parents hear the call to love God in serving their children, in caring for their aging parents, in serving on school boards, and in their work. We hear of police and fire men and women, and other public servants, who know their careers as “service”.

In Jesus’ question to Peter three times, “Do you love me?” I hear echoes of: Will you show your love for me by caring for others?... Are you mature enough now?? Can you be responsible for teaching others how to love me…? Will you give your life in service to others who need to hear, to see, to know my love?” Jesus’ question doesn’t stop with Peter. It’s alive to each of us, every day.

Today, Jesus asks, “Do you love me?” How do you/I respond?

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