In 1997, John Paul II called for consecrated life to be promoted throughout the universal Church. He declared February 2, the feast of the Presentation of the Lord, to be observed as World Day for Consecrated Life (WDCL). In the United States, when February 2 is not on a Sunday, we celebrate on the Sunday after the Presentation.
The celebration of World Day for Consecrated Life invites all the Church to reflect on the role of Consecrated Life within the Christian community. Those who choose to live a consecrated life do so for the sake of the gospel. This year’s WDCL theme is “Blessed!“.
Some Christian women and men respond to God’s call to become followers of Jesus through profession of vows and a life dedicated to prayer and service. They live out the consecrated life in different ways. Religious sisters, nuns, brothers, religious priests, and monks consecrate their lives through their profession of the evangelical vows and live as part of a community. Single lay people may choose to be consecrated virgins and make private vows to the local bishop as they live out their vocation in various walks of life. Secular institutes are another form of living the consecrated life as single people. Those who become followers of Jesus through the consecrated life bless the Church. By fostering a culture of vocations, the Church is enriched. May these materials facilitate your local celebration.