The Catholic Vocation
increase; I must decrease.”
(St. John 3.30)
and a Summary
these six words, St. John
the Baptist summarizes our vocation as Catholics, indeed, the vocation
of every Christian at all times, in every place, and in every situation
— in all we think, say, and do which, if we are serious about
Christ, ought to be everything.
would have had St. John tell them that he was the Christ, the Awaited
One, and had St. John yielded to this inducement to anoint himself the
Messiah — and not the one preparing His way — what increase
John would have known! But John – who commanded the crowds, and whom
Herod himself feared — rejoices at the coming of the King — and exults
in his own diminution!
coming of the King, the Herald becomes unnecessary. Those that gathered
around him in great multitudes would go to another, to the King Himself
–— and the herald would fall to the side, his voice would cease, and
to those late in coming, he would point away from himself to the King
Whom he awaited in anticipation, had immediately acknowledged, and boldly
humility still: the King kneels before the Herald
— and is baptized by him!
ought to be baptized by Thee,
and comest Thou
to me?” 2 Saint John the Baptist
protests — and the Christ of the Living God kneels before
him in the River Jordan, that all things may be fulfilled.
are given us: that of the Herald who rejoices in the exaltation of the
King and the diminishing of himself ... and that of the King Who humbles
Himself to fulfill His exaltation as King.
you would you make yourself great, esteemed,
notable, in the eyes of men?
the way to Christ even before He came. And you still do not
— even after He has come?
He must increase ... and we
must decrease. It is the Law, the Prophets, and the Gospel;
it is the summary of your life in Christ. Except that He increase and
you decrease, your life in Christ is pretension.