Consecrated Virginity questions

I have noticed an interesting pattern going on in my spiritual walk. Namely, a growing curiosity for the consecrated vocations.

Each period of curiosity usually leads me to researching different religious orders. This is normally a short lived period and gives way to a longer fascination with the vocation of Consecrated Virginity. Each time I go through these phases, Consecrated Virginity always “sticks”.

I’ve been open to the possibility of religious life since my mid-late teens around the time when the thought first occurred and have been keeping my eyes open for signs since then. It seemed clear then that God wasn’t calling me to act yet but simply develop my capacity to love in many different ways. I later learned about Consecrated Virginity and has been added to my “radar”.

Anyways, back to what I was saying earlier, these episodes of curiosity started around late teens and came and went occasionally but I just let God lead me in ordinary life. As of the last two or so years however, these episodes have been more frequent and always lead me back to Consecrated Virginity. This vocation has been in my mind to some extent for the past two years. Maybe this is a hint I should start considering it as a serious possibility…

So, this leads me to a few questions I have (especially if you are a consecrated virgin yourself):

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1: In your opinion, is it better to have gone through the process of dating first to rule that possibility out? I have never dated (I’m 26). It’s not that I have a fear of dating or think lower of Marriage as a vocation. It is incredibly beautiful… But I have noticed a desire to give of myself radically in a different way…To give of myself totally to Christ; the Beloved Spouse of my soul, and to the Church in service to many. Not sure if this excludes Marriage though…

2: One thing that attracts me to CV is the fact that you give of the charisms and talents which are unique to the individual for the sake of the kingdom. I think this is one reason that I keep coming away from researching religious orders with only surface satisfaction in the end. Many orders tend to focus on one or two charisms which is great and serves as specialties for each order. But this feels restricting for what I feel called to give of myself. I have talents of art, caring for people, story writing, listening, a lot of different things I feel I want to use to their fullest extent possible. Does this, in your opinion, seem like a good reason to give up looking for religious orders? And yes, I know that religious life is a completely different vocation. But they both have in common the radical giving of yourself to Christ and the church which I’m still discerning and I don’t want to rule it out completely. And there are soooo many orders that it is hard to know how to look through them comprehensively.

3: As I understand it, as a CV, you become especially consecrated to the parish you were consecrated in. Does this have to be the parish you physically live under? The church I normally attend and am involved with is not the parish I physically live under. Would this pose a problem?

4: Are there any sort of sins against impurity that would disqualify you for CV besides giving up your virginity?

  1. What sort of things do you think make this vocation different from just being a person devoutly living their faith as an unconsecrated layperson (…well, we are all consecrated at baptism, but you get my gist). Also, what kind of crosses do you think often come with a vocation? How often do you correspond with the Bishop and what sort of things do you typically communicate about?

Here is the link for the US Association of Consecrated Virgins:

Minimum age is 25, so it sounds like you’re at that particular point.

One must be an actual physical virgin, and have never even engaged in foreplay, to qualify. If you don’t meet that criteria, then perhaps a secular institute could be where you’re feeling called.

CVs are consecrated by their local bishops, and serve in that particular diocese, not the parish. You’d have to work out with the bishop about your parish preference.

Check the website for the answers to your questions. Above all, get a local spiritual director, contact the diocesan vocations director, and engage in a lot of Adoration. Daily Mass and the Liturgy of the Hours will be requirements, as well. Stay close to Our Lady through her rosary.

We are all tempted according to our state-of-life. You’ll more than likely be tempted to impurity, among other things.

Hope this is helpful.

Mrs Cloisters OP
Lay Dominican

If you look up “Catholic Amanda” on YouTube, you might find some of the answers that you are looking for! She is a CV and has some videos about her journey, some Q&A’s, and even a video of the ceremony itself. She is also pretty great at answering back, should you have any other questions to ask her. I will be praying for you!

I failed to mention that if the consecration is violated, one will be barred from communion until one’s deathbed.

Thank you for the useful resources!!

Yes, very much agreed, Holy Hours are indispensable when dealing with discernment. If I do feel the call to take the next steps, my parish is fortunate to house the Verbum Spei fraternity which are an amazing group of religious brothers/priests. They offer spiritual direction among other things. And yes about contacting the vocations director :slight_smile: Also, I often get the terms Parish and Diocese mixed up so thank you for the clarification hehe

Lastly, as I understand it, the Liturgy of the Hours, though it isn’t technically “required” is highly recommended and is presented to you as you are officially consecrated as it is a way to pray in union with the Church. It is at least recommended to pray the morning and evening prayers. Also, similar thing with daily Mass. I don’t see anything saying it is “required”. Not that I would object to that. After all, the bride should spend as much time as is within her power communing with the Bridegroom.

(Edit: the information packet says “highly recommended” in regard to daily Mass).

Wow really? Another reason discernment is so important.

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