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Archbishop Bernard Longley of Birmingham. A sense of vocation – healthcare workers have a calling beyond their career

Archbishop Bernard Longley of Birmingham, celebrated Mass to show prayerful gratitude for all our nurses and doctors, carers in hospices, hospices and care homes and, indeed, those who are carers at home.

Do this and life is yours.

…..We shall never forget 2020..For those of you who have been caring for hospital patients, for care home residents or for your own relatives there will be many individual moments of struggle and of loving care that will feature within your picture-frame


Among the most vivid memories that I will recall from this extraordinary time is the clear message that what motivates and energises our health care workers is their sense of vocation – that beyond the career or profession lies a calling. People of faith would recognise this as a calling from God to care for and serve others. For other people it is a calling that arises from within human nature itself responding to the needs of others and impelling them to reach out in kinship to their fellow human beings to bring healing, comfort and consolation.

In the parable of the Good Samaritan, the sick man was from Samaria – from a different culture and background. The Samaritan does notice and he acts, proving himself to be a true neighbour to his brother. There is a pertinent lesson here about seeing beyond my prejudices and acting justly in my appraisal of people with a different background and culture from my own. The parable invites us to cherish every human life on the basis of the innate dignity that comes from God.

…We thank Christ the redeemer and the giver of new life that, while many people have sadly died without family present, they have not died ‘alone’ because the carers in hospitals and residential homes have been with them.
We shall never forget 2020. We shall recall the goodness and truth evident in so many words and deeds responding to peoples’ needs. We shall recall the words of Christ:

Do this and life is yours.