Saturday, July 17, 2010

A Vocation Question

(just so the reader knows, I have broken up with my Episcopal girlfriend, and am now determined to either marry a Catholic girl who wants lots of babies / is faithful to Church teaching, or to enter religious life, or to be a single laymen in some sort of secular vocation).

After my whole reversion to Anglicanism and then return to Rome, and my time with the Toronto Jesuits, I think I am not called to be a priest. In any case, I am an exceptionally sinful human being, and don't really have a great holiness or personal witness. But deep within me there is this great desire and thirst for such a life. I saw this video today:

I thought: man I wish I could live like that. There truly is no nobler life.

I guess my question is:

Is it possible to have a deep spiritual desire for a vocation like that, and have it not be your vocation?

Should I rather just pray for those religious orders, and people discerning and within them, rather than always wonder if I should be in them?

I remember the story of St. Therese of Lisieux's parents both wanting to enter religious life, and their priest told them rather that they were to have children, all of whom entered religious life and one of whom is a saint and doctor of the church. Perhaps the longing I feel is the same longing all Catholics feel for an opportunity to give everything for their faith.

I've also considered lay religious organizations, like the tertiary Franciscans / Secular Franciscan Order, that is composed of married and celibate, lay and clerical people living in the spirit of St. Francis.

Anyway, I'm going to Confession and Mass now.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Andrew,

    I think the fundamental question to discern for yourself is: do you feel called to love one person in an exclusive way (marriage) or love many broadly (your fellow Franciscan brothers, your congregation, and so on as a religious/priest)?

    The different ecclesial movements, lay associates, and third orders available to laity (even married laity) are numerous and diverse. My wife and I have considered third order Franciscan.

    Don't necessarily rule yourself out of religious life because you are aware of your sinfulness. You are still quite a young man and have many years to grow in maturity of faith, human virtues, grace, and so on. I know how hopeless it can feel to try to overcome habitual sins, but it is possible with Christ.

    Either way, this decision is a glorious one: be happy that you are afforded the opportunity to make it; many people have conversions later in life and for better or for worse already chose their vocation without including God in the decision. It's a great time in your life and our Lord will not let you choose wrongly, for you are seeking Him.

    God bless!