Friday, December 11, 2015

Vision: "Why being single and living as a sister aren’t the same"

As the semester comes to a close, I am trying to catch up the publications that have come out over the past few months. Below is one- an article in the most recent edition of Vision Vocation Guide about the difference between vowed religious life and life as a committed single person.  In some ways, because of the publication, the material deals more with ideas and ideals than experience; there is much gray in the midst of it all- not all communities are the same, but the reason for and state of religious life stand as a distinct and unique. Religious life is definitive, a unique expression of the Christian life lived out by grace in commitment. It is a radical calling, not better or worse than any other, yet certainly distinctive.  With all that said... I hope you enjoy the article. Blessings, Colleen

When I told people I was thinking about becoming a religious sister, they asked me the same questions: Why did I feel called? Why religious life? Or just plain, Why?

And once I told them about my desire to grow in my relationship with God, to serve others, and to live a radical life of intention in line with the gospel, the inevitable questions were: Why become a sister? Couldn’t you do all those things as a committed single woman?

Yes, I could have done all of those things as a committed single woman. I realized this as I discerned, so the bigger question for me was: What exactly is the difference between a committed single life and a vowed religious one?

The answer to that question is more complex than simple statements. It digs deep into the nature of call and vocation, uncovering who we are and what call truly means. Single life and religious life, after all, are both calls. Before we can look at how the two are different, it is helpful to understand what they have in common.

As Christians, we are called to live out our faith. The lives we lead reflect the love of Christ, and our vocations are the way in which we are most called to share that love with the world. Our true vocation enables us to be our most genuine selves as God created us to be.

The people who questioned me about why I was becoming a sister rather than staying single had my best interests in mind. I could do everything I sought to do as a committed single woman, but they missed one key point: discernment of a vocation is about more than you.

Vocation is about you and God—your deepest desires and God’s deepest desires for you. Discernment is about discovering those desires in relationship with God and naming what gives fullest life to that relationship. You don’t become a sister because of a lack of options, just as you ideally don’t remain single because nothing better has come along. You commit yourself to a way of life based on how your relationship with Christ calls you... Read the rest here

1 comment:

  1. Will be praying for you. St. Anne, I place her in your prayers til she enters heaven.