"Pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers." This means that the harvest is ready, but God wishes to enlist helpers to bring it into the storehouse. God needs them. He needs people to say: Yes, I am ready to become your harvest laborer; I am ready to offer help so that his harvest which is ripening in people's hearts may truly be brought into the storehouses of eternity and become an enduring, divine communion of joy and love.

"Pray the Lord of the harvest" also means that we cannot simply "produce" vocations; they must come from God. Unlike other professions, we cannot simply recruit people by using the right kind of publicity or the correct type of strategy. The call which comes from the heart of God must always find its way into the heart of man. And yet, precisely so that it may reach into hearts, our cooperation is needed.

To pray the Lord of the harvest means above all to ask him for this, to stir his heart and say: "Please do this! Rouse laborers! Enkindle in them enthusiasm and joy for the Gospel! Make them understand that this is a treasure greater than any other, and that whoever has discovered it, must hand it on.

We stir the heart of God. But our prayer to God does not consist of words alone; the words must lead to action so that from our praying heart a spark of our joy in God and in the Gospel may arise, en kindling in the heart of others a readiness to say "yes."

As people of prayer, filled with his light, we reach out to others and bring them into our prayer and into the presence of God, who will not fail to do his part. In this sense we must continue to pray the lord of the harvest, to stir his heart, and together with God touch the hearts of others through our prayer. And he, according to his purpose, will bring to maturity their "yes," their readiness to respond; the constancy, in other words, through all this world's perplexity, through the heat of the day and the darkness of the night, to persevere faithfully in his service.

Hence they will know that their efforts, however arduous, are noble and worthwhile because they lead to what is essential, they ensure that people receive that they hope for; God's light and God's love.

Spiritual Motherhood for Priests

The vocation to be a spiritual mother for priests is largely unknown, scarcely understood and, consequently, rarely lived, not withstanding its fundamental importance. It is a vocation that is frequently hidden, invisible to the naked eye, but meant to transmit spiritual life. Pope John Paul II, was so convinced of its importance that he established a cloistered convent in the Vatican where nuns would pray for the intentions of the Supreme Pontiff.

But spiritual motherhood is not only for nuns. Any woman can be a spiritual mother for priests, married or single, a widow, or someone who is ill. Take St. Monica for example. Her son, St. Augustine said that "I have my mother to thank for what I have become and the way that I got there!"
Pope John Paul II even thanked a child for her motherly help: "I also express my gratitude to Bl. Jacinta for the sacrifices and prayers offered for the Holy Father, whom she saw suffering greatly." (May 13 2000)

Every priest has a birth mother, and often she is a spiritual mother for her children as well. For example, Giuseppe Sarto, the future Pope Pius X, visited his 70-year-old mother after being ordained a Bishop. She kissed her son's ring and, suddenly pensive, pointed out her own simple silver wedding band saying."Yes, Giuseppe, you would not be wearing that ring if I had not first worn mine." Pope St. Pius X rightfully confirms his experience that, "Every vocation to the priesthood comes from the heart of God, but it goes through the heart of a mother!"

Source: Congregation for the Clergy.