Concerns about Religious Life


#1

Hello! I am discerning a religious vocation. I have a question, or rather a worry, about what prayer looks like in a religious vocation. On one hand, I very much so want to have my entire life be centered on God, but on the other hand, I worry that if I enter the religious life, my prayer life will shrivel up and die. I suppose I wonder, would waking up for the office of readings, going to Mass, praying in community, and individual meditation lose its wonder? If so, does it come back again? Thanks!


#2

Hello,

The Love of God our >> Good Father and the Love of our >> good LORD Jesus be to you.
I liked that fact that you wanted a God centered life.

Have you found a solid verifiable contact with Christ?

Some of us are finding that and unused Biblical approach works to our
astonishment, indwelling happinness PLUS.

After that experience 'God centered' is the happening thing.

John.4
[22] Ye worship ye know not what: we know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews.
[23] But the hour cometh, and now is,
when the true worshippers >> shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: (spontaneous)
for the Father seeketh such to worship him.
[24] God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.

I am happy to share info with you if you like.

I hope that all is working well for you.

StraitGateSheep.


#3

Nuns have told me that God will give you all the graces needed to sustain you in religious life, even when it seems impossible and the good feelings are gone. St. Therese of the Little Flower, in her book "Story of a Soul," explains that she often felt a great dryness in her relationship to God, in spite of her deep experiences of His love and the wonderful spiritual poems that she wrote. Feeling "dead" isn't the same thing as being dead, though; sometimes great growth happens in the soul during periods like this, and joy is possible even when you feel empty and tired.


#4

Well of course you’ll get bored with it after awhile, finding it monotonous at some point. Does it come back again? I have to imagine so.

I’ve gone on a trip to the local Trappist abbey, and though the guys there look ancient, they all seem to enjoy their life (especially the litany of the hours, which they hold in a room where the public may join with them (behind a gate, of course).

One of them was actually rather funny when he was talking with us. :thumbsup:


#5

Yes, you will go through periods of "boredom" and wonder if things will ever return to normal. A great saint of the religious life, St. John of the Cross (Carmelite) called it the "Dark Night of the Soul." God is still with you in the dark night, but it can be a challenge....

Some religious refer to the early years of great fervor and happiness as a "honeymoon." They in fact worry about religious who say they experience great ecstasies, because those don't usually last. The question is whether your vocation is true enough to persist even when the emotional highs aren't there...? That is why the discernment and formation processes are so long.

Good luck and blessings to you. A spiritual director now, well before entering religious life, can really help you with this. If you are discerning a vocation to religious life, please look for a director who is also a religious, ideally in a tradition that attracts you.


#6

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