Faith development is about developing an approach to life — a lifestyle dominated by values and concerns that resemble God’s values and concerns. This isn’t something we just “learn”. It isn’t primarily intellectual, and it doesn’t stop when we are confirmed or finish school. It requires time, effort, ongoing study and prayer. It includes emotional, social and practical components, and must be exercised until our faith is internalized and sets the tone for everything we dream or do. At that point our faith starts to “exercise” us; Faith governs our lives.
Faith development is a life-long pursuit. It challenges the values the world promotes so brazenly and so successfully that we don’t even notice how much these “worldly” values shape our desires and behavior: values like our need for entertainment, “success”, getting a deal, competition, being “right”, demanding our rights, and purchasing isolation from disquieting problems. Faith development reorients us toward others, valuing compassion over power, generosity over acquisition, affirmation over criticism. It suggests that we find an alternative to the fast lane of life and use our energy to do what we are created to do: to love life, to thank God for the opportunity, and to share our love with others.
Just as pursuing a better look and perfect health requires effort, faith development involves spending some time, motivating ourselves, acquiring the “how-to” knowledge, and working out (“practicing” our faith) — possibly with the help of a personal trainer (a spiritual director).
See our Focus Areas page for more information.
Deciding what our vocation is, and how best to serve God with our individual talents, skills and abilities is a very personal decision, yet one that is also made within our community of faith and with the support and encouragement of others.
The Vocation Office of the Diocese of Hamilton offers this web site as a resource for all those who are thinking about their own vocations, or who are supporting others in a process of discernment. Visit the Diocese website http://www.hamiltondiocese.com/site/