“(We vow) chastity, lived out whole-heartedly in celibacy, which leads us to open our hearts more and more to God and to the neighbour, without discrimination (CR IV 1; C 29; 30) and which we receive as a gift from God and as a way of following Christ who gave himself up for all of us and loved us unreservedly.”
Program for Vincentian Formation in the Major Seminary
Jesus loved chastity and desired that the hearts of his followers be filled with it. The celibate lifestyle provides us the opportunity, as it does Jesus, for greater mobility, time for prayer, and the freedom to serve many brothers and sisters. It is a sign too, that we believe in a future that goes beyond family or children. It should not become an escape from loving, but rather, a stimulus to love all the more.
How do we practice this in a modern world?
- prayer – our vows help us focus explicitly on God and facilitate our praying and praying helps us live out our commitments
- job satisfaction – If someone is happy in what he is doing, the burdens of commitment will not be so heavy
- community and friendship – no man is an island, we all need support
- honest talk – problems too long held within us, or dealt with in isolation, often causes enormous personal confusion and eventually explode. Anyone without a soul friend, as the Celtic saying goes, is a body without a head.
- personal discipline and prudence in relationships
- a balanced lifestyle