Consecration as hermit under Canon 603


#1

Can anyone tell me please anything about consecration as a hermit…an urban hermit.

[LIST=1]
*]What constitutes an urban hermit?
*]What would be asked of a person seeking this consecration?
*]Are there certain conditions/qualities asked and what are they?
*]Can a local bishop set his own conditions etc.?
*]I live in Australia - anyone informed on what may apply strictly only here in Australia if anything? Or are conditions set under Canon 603 to apply everywhere?
*]While the consecration is canonical and by a Bishop, can it be done entirely privately?
*]Could consecration as an urban hermit include study as a student two days weekly and some (not frequent) visitors/visiting as works of Mercy?
*]Are there only two ways outside of religious life to be consecrated canonically and these two ways are:- The Order of Virgins or Canon 603(hermit)?
*]If one makes vows received by a priest very privately is this regarded as a valid consecration?..if not canonical consecration which is by a Bishop.[/LIST]I am interested in the offical Church position re Nos. 8 and 9.

Thanks in advance muchly:) …

Blessings and regards…Barb:)
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#2

Hi,
I’m no expert on Canon law, but off the top of my head:

What constitutes an urban hermit?

I don’t really know

What would be asked of a person seeking this consecration?

I don’t really know

Are there certain conditions/qualities asked and what are they?

I’d say so, but I don’t know what they are.

Can a local bishop set his own conditions etc.?

from Can 603.2 - ‘under the guidance of the diocesan Bishop’ - I’d say so.

I live in Australia - anyone informed on what may apply strictly only here in Australia if anything? Or are conditions set under Canon 603 to apply everywhere?

Canon Law applies universally to the Roman Rite of the Church. There’s probably nothing more that applies to individual places, except maybe individual bishops may have certain conditions in their dioceses.

While the consecration is canonical and by a Bishop, can it be done entirely privately?

One could privately lead a hermit’s life, but one would not be able to consider oneself a consecrated hermit or anchorite in the Church.

Could consecration as an urban hermit include study as a student two days weekly and some (not frequent) visitors/visiting as works of Mercy?

I don’t know.

Are there only two ways outside of religious life to be consecrated canonically and these two ways are:- The Order of Virgins or Canon 603(hermit)?

Those are the only two ways I’ve ever heard of and I that’s all I can see in Canon law.

If one makes vows received by a priest very privately is this regarded as a valid consecration?..if not canonical consecration which is by a Bishop.

No I think the Canon law seems to say that the bishop has to receive the profession, publicly: “Hermits are recognised by law as dedicated to God in consecrated life if, in the hands of the diocesan Bishop, they publicly profess…” (Can 603.2)

So logically hermits are not validly consecrated if they don’t make the profession in the hands of the bishop and publicly.

I know of a fairly old woman who is an Anchoress in the diocese of Armidale, she wears a veil and I’ve just seen her there at daily mass at the Cathedral and praying in the church, but I don’t know what she does beyond that.

Do you know your Bishop very well?

Anyway, hope this helps a bit. I’m no authority on any of this.

God bless. I’ll pray for you.


#3

Thanks heaps Trevelyan! No one really seems to know much about it to my research anyway and I think probably if I did consider things any further I’d need to contact the Vocations Director in my diocese; however the thought of quite personally coming to the attention of a bishop would freeze me into inertia I think. Not my style for sure! No, His Grace, does not know me personally at all - he may have heard of me, I dont know.
I’m seeing my new director/confessor - a priest! Giving much thanks indeed! - next week for the first time as my d/c and he knows me exceptionally well. I’ll have a talk with him. I am sure would sound out His Grace for me on necessaries - that’s if things go that far.
Again I thank you…Cheers and God’s Blessings - Barb:)
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#4

Try these links:

Includes a forum for people to ask questions, information about what a hermit is, and links to blogs by hermits.
hermitary.com/features/

Yahoo group for hermits or people who are interested in becoming hermits
groups.yahoo.com/group/Catholic_Hermits/

Newsletter for hermits. If you search through the archived newsletter you will find a series of articles about canon law 603.
op.org/ravensbread/

Article about a man who became a hermit several years ago. He affliliated himself with the Community of Hermits of St. Bruno, which is linked below.
charlottediocese.org/customers/101092709242178/filemanager/CNH%20Docs/Hermit.pdf

saintbruno.org/index.html

I hope these are helpful for you.


#5

Thanks very much, Anne, for taking the time and trouble to post the links. I’ll have a look at them tonight.

Blessings…regards…Barb:)
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#6

Dear Barabara Therese,

Trevelyn and Anne were helpful in their replies, though I understand that the Community of St Bruno no longer exists and Catholic Hermits has little activity these days.

  1. An urban hermit is just a consecrated hermit under Canon 603 who lives in anurban area.For women especially it can be safer. I myself am a suburban hermit and was perpetually professed in Feb of this year.

2/3.Vocationally some criteria are similar to someone who’s looking at monastic life, and it can be helpful to have spent time in a religious community. I don’t have room here to go into much detail but you’ll find many women hermits have done so in the past. If you email Raven’s Bread, Karen and Paul Fredette have material on the eremitical vocation which you’ll have to pay for.(I have some articles from them). Subscribing to the newsletter could be useful.

4/5. The bishop and hermit discuss issues which are particular to the situation of the hermit. These are clearly laid out in a Plan of Life or a personal Statute (See Can. 603). There are general norms which affect all hermits but the vocation itself allows for individuality. I lived many years in S. America but am back home now across “the ditch” in NZ so perhaps there isn’t a lot of difference between our two countries regarding hermits. I think there’s a canonical hermit in the archdiocese of Perth and maybe in Sydney (?). I was thinking of checking this myself actually to see if there are many dio hermits in this region.

6/9. You can *consecrate yourself * to God as a hermit if you wish and several people do, but you would not be consecrated (by the bishop). There’s a difference. The first would be a valid consecration in your heart, between God and yourself, but it wouldn’t be considered a canonical, public consecration received by the Church. The ceremony itself doesn’t have to have a lot of people but because the hermit’s vocation is in the heart of the Church it’s usually expected there are people in the church to celebrate it!

  1. What you propose here sounds somewhat busy and a lot of time out of the hermitage. Can. 603 says “a stricter separation from the world” and the hermit has a specific charism in the Church. Of course a hermit receives visitors - but not too many - and any apostolate out of the hermitage is spelled out in the Plan of Life, but discernment is needed. Some hermits have go out to work to support themselves as financial self-sufficiency can be a challenge.

  2. Both types of consecration you describe are valid paths of serving God. Don’t forget Secular Institutes either which may exist in Australia and of course there are Benedictine Oblates, the Secular or Third Orders of the Carmelites, Franciscans, Marists…vocations of lay people as they serve God in their particular state of life.

It’s a sensible move to talk to the Vocations’ Director in your diocese. I’ll try to keep an eye on this thread in case you have any more questions. There’s a revised Handbook on the eremitical vocation being prepared in a US diocese and might be ready next month but I need to check on that. I haven’t found a lot on the Internet about the vocation of a diocesan hermit but we’re certainly around.

Many blessings,

rosacarmeli.


#7

PS

Barbara Therese, I don’t know if you’ll return to this thread but I should have mentioned in my post yesterday that if you have to finish some studies you can ease yourself into the hermit life gradually. Formation takes some years as you may imagine and there’s no need to hurry. It would be good to have studies behind you before possible consecration, which can be temporary and only later perpetual.

I’m not an expert but if you need help or info you can contact me at cyberskete@yahoo.com

In Jesus,

rosacarmeli.


#8

I have been following the discussion on hermits, and when it was mentioned that there was a canonical hermit in Perth, I decided to reply. (Since I am that hermit). I was consecrated a while back and will take final vows next year. I followed all the steps as they have been previously listed. Spiritual direction and living the lifestyle should have been engaged in for a while before seeing the Ordinary of the diocese. In my case Archbishop Hickey met with me a few times over a couple years. Then I submitted a formal written application. The bishop takes his time, checks everything out and then a Rite is planned.

In the Roman Pontificary there are Rites for most consecrations, but there is not yet one for hermits. I got help from the US diocese of LaCrosse, Wisconsin, which has a number of hermits. A book on the whole process has been published by that diocese. A nun friend here, who is a liturgical specialist, helped me write up the ceremony. It can be very involved or very simple, but looks much like the ceremony for entering religious life. Indeed, the hermit is a religious. Anyone vowing the evangalical counsels is considered so, although most live in community.

Some hermits choose to receive a scapular–particularly those who live “out the back” of some monastery or abbey. There are two such women who live at the Benedictine women’s abbey in Jamberoo, out of Sydney. They wear the Benedictine cloak during Mass and the Office. I chose a ring, since at present, at least, I am a suburban hermit and do not live connected to a religious house.

I would be happy to answer any questions or discuss aspects of the life which is one which suits me and in which I am happy.

Laura, Canonical hermit, Archdiocese of Perth


#9

Thanks all…some really helpful information in this thread. Apologies it has taken time for me to come back to this thread - the computer has been playing up and was only reinstated as operational yesterday.

Blessings and regards…and thanks again for the info - Barb:)
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#10

Hi there, I am also a diocesan hermit, just having made perpetual profession and consecration last Sunday (Sept 2), in fact. I am also an urban, or suburban hermit since my hermitage is located in the suburbs. I can only echo all the information Sister Nerina supplied, and others (Sister Laura) as well. Public consecration is a part of Canon 603 life because the hermit publicly (though hiddenly) represents this vocation in the heart of the Church. While one may consecrate themselves to God, make private vows, etc. this is not the same thing as receiving the consecration of the Church, or having public vows and canonical status in the Church. I personally think that being an urban hermit is no different than being a hermit anywhere else, except the challenges of living solitude and silence are greater; also the witness value can be greater to those touched by the unnatural solitudes of our impersonal and alienating cities, apartment complexes, and the like. The process of getting recognized by a diocese, much less admitted to profession and then perpetual profession can be a long one, and unfortunately some dioceses are unwilling to deal with hermits yet, though this is changing as more of us become known, and experiences of Bishops create a well of confidence. But the guidelines already provided are good: be living the life for some time (at least 2-3 years) before approaching the chancery and Vicars for Religious or Consecrated life. Have a spiritual director, a solid spiritual life, a sense of what eremitism represents in the church, and of course, why you want to life this life as canonically recognized. (Not all hermits find canonical status desirable, and the church does refer to non-canonical hermits in the catechism of the Catholic Church.) I would also recommend that one at least rough out a plan of life that addresses not just the nuts and bolts of how you live, but provides some sense of the theology of eremitic life and the vows as well. This can be invaluable to the person in coming to clarity about their own vocation and also consolidate pieces that may just be coming together within oneself. If you can do this, you are ready to approach the chancery and Bishop! My own perpetual profession was done using the Roman Rite of perpetual profession for women. We made some slight adjustments specifying eremitic life, and allowing for the canonical granting of the monastic cowl (as is done in solemn professions in monasteries), and the vows were my own (in fact they were the ones I had used first in 1978 when finally professed in community) — though we added a paragraph before and after them which re-contexyualized them as eremitic vows. It didn’t matter much that there is no specific rite of profession for hermits yet. everyone was completely clear on the concept of what was happening!! Work, study, and ministry are critical questions. Most Bishops will not profess anyone needing to work outside the hermitage to support themselves. At the same time, solitary life can spill over into ministry in one’s parish and community, but as Sister Nerina mentioned, this must be spelled out in one’s plan of life, and approved. One’s vocation is to solitude and silence, prayer and penance, and active ministry must be secondary and the fruit of one’s vocation to solitude, etc. My own plan of life allows for me to return occasionally to do post-grad work in areas of theological specialty or monastic life and spirituality as needed personally, or because of parish commitments and ministry, however, any occasion of such would need to be approved specifically. I doubt anyone still studying regularly would be admitted to profession, or even seriously considered for it, BUT that does not mean one cannot move slowly into eremitic life from semi-eremitic life, for instance. One does a LOT of studying in the hermitage: it is a life-long process for most of us, so the two things are compatible — just within limits and under supervision!! Meanwhile, I do hope any other diocesan hermits that read this thread consider joining the cyberskete Sister Nerina linked to. We are a grassroots group, just beginning, and hoping to meet a real need for support amongst those consecrated in the Church in this way (under canon 603). By the way, though not mentioned in Canon law there is a third way to consecrate oneself in the Church: this is the order of widows. John Paul II mentioned this briefly in a document on consecrated life, and I have heard a couple of stories of women who have been consecrated by their dioceses in this capacity. Unfortunately, it is far less well known than even hermits and consecrated virgins, despite being one of two original forms of consecrated life in the early church. I don’t know what the implications are for this being absent from canon law, but I suspect individual Bishops will proceed very cautiously using whatever ancient rites exist.All good wishes to all in this thread!Sincerely,Sister Laurel M O’NealStillsong Hermitage


#11

My answers will duplicate some of those of Rosacarmeli, but hopefully offer some differences of perspective.

  1. An urban hermit is simply a hermit living in an urban area. Thomas Merton identified urban areas as areas of unnatural solitude, and saw the mission of the urban hermit to witness to the fact that even in such places unnatural solitude could be made true or redeemed by the grace of God, and folks there could learn what is possible when human poverty and the grace of God meet.

2)The diocese/Bishop would ask for a person who lives true solitude, a life of assiduous prayer and penance and who can maintain their greater separation from the world even in the midst of an urban reality. They would require a strong prayer life, demonstrated fidelity to this over a period of years, and a demonstrated capacity to live one’s ENTIRE life in this way. Practically they would need to be self-supporting, psychologically sound, sensitive to the needs of their community and parish and capable of having an eremitic presence there without compromising solitude. They would need to be compassionate, able to relate well to others, not misanthropists or those seeking solitude merely to carry on their own studies, activities, etc.

  1. This answer overlaps with #2 above. My own diocese looked for all of the above as well as formation, regular spiritual direction, perseverence, education (theological and spiritual).

  2. Yes, although there are limits to this.

  3. Canon 603 is universal. While local customs my come into play, it is canon 603 itself which is normative.

  4. No, or at least it is valid in it’s own sense, but NOT in the sense of canon 603. There is a difference between being consecrated to a new state of life, and making a private consecration. Public standing means the person is constituted as a public person, no matter the hiddeness of their lives. Consecration and profession under canon 603 "initiates a person into a new state of life and to juridical standing as a public person in the church. Private consecration is the gift of self, but it does not do these other things. The act of consecration occurs when the Bishop prays the prayer of consecration over the person. The person has given themselves in making their (perpetual vows) and THIS profession (consecration in the first sense) is then followed by the actual Consecration (consecration in the second sense). Note that this consecration is NOT PART of the rite of temporary profession.

  5. My own Rule of life allows me to take a course here or there if I need one for something I am studying, writing on, etc, but I know that my own Bishop would not allow me to study for two days a week, no. As for other coming to the hermitage, I am allowed to receive a limited number of spiritual direction clients, and to do a very limited amount of adult education at the parish. I also take Communion to a few people once a week. All these things must grow out of the hermit’s solitude, and not compromise it. They would be worked out with one’s Bishop, one’s spiritual director, and with one’s diocesan delegate (a quasi superior who serves the hermit and the Bishop for ordinary matters and permissions).

  6. Yes, pretty much. There is also the Order of Widows, though this has not been included in the Revised Code of Canon Law. Still, some Bishops have allowed this consecration as well, though it is VERY rare.

  7. Private vows represent the PERSON’S consecration of themself. It does NOT represent the Church’s consecration of the person to the state of consecrated life. As explained above, the consecration of canon 603 implies admission to a (public) state of life. Private consecration does not do this. Hope this helps.


#12

Thank you…Barb:)


#13

I realized I misinterpreted Barbara’s sixth question, namely, if a canonical consecration is done, can it be done completely privately? My answer to this is no, since the consecration establishes the person in a public role despite the essential hiddenness of their life on a day to day basis, the consecration takes place publicly. It is appropriate that this happen because the call of the candidate, the profession, and the consecration is very much an ecclesial act involving the entire Church. The litany of the Saints makes this most clear when done in conjunction with the public celebration of Mas/Vows/Consecration, and it makes no real sense to have all of this done privately (except in situations which completely preclude such celebration in countries where martyrdom or oppression is common).

Have a tremendous Holy Week!


#14

Thank you Sister…to consecrate onself privately via private vows with these private vows most usually received by a priest is another means The Church recognizes and is a unique calling.
The wording in the Catechism is a bit ambiguous since it could seem to imply that canonical profession could take place privately. If the wording had been “without always professing the three evangelical counsels canonically and publically…etc.” would have clarified things.

Catholic Catechism

**The eremitic life **
920 Without always professing the three evangelical counsels publicly, hermits "devote their life to the praise of God and salvation of the world through a stricter separation from the world, the silence of solitude and assiduous prayer and penance."460 921 They manifest to everyone the interior aspect of the mystery of the Church, that is, personal intimacy with Christ. Hidden from the eyes of men, the life of the hermit is a silent preaching of the Lord, to whom he has surrendered his life simply because he is everything to him. Here is a particular call to find in the desert, in the thick of spiritual battle, the glory of the Crucified One.

I did make an enquiry (at least in the initial stages) to my diocesan bishop and was asked why I wanted the consecration to be public?..and I took this as inferring that there could be a private consecration, as I was under the impression canonical consecration was always public. I stated then that my distinct preference would be a private consecration. I withdrew my enquiry due to personal factors at that time. So this left me somewhat confused, understanding as I did that canonical consecration was always public.

Blessings and may this Holy Lent prove richly blest for you and for all… Barb:)


#15

#16

if he or she publicly professes the three evangelical counsels, confirmed by vow or other sacred bond, in the hands of the diocesan bishop and observes his or her own plan of life under his direction."

It differs from the catechism because the catechism is referring to BOTH non-canonical and canonical hermits; they are, afterall BOTH realities in the church. Canon law and legal standing applies only to those publicly professed/consecrated. Non-canonical hermits are indeed a unique vocation with their own charism and should be highly esteemed for this reason. They are also, perforce, privately professed and not an instance of " the state of consecrated life" (canon 588), as noted earlier (and in canon 603).

While it may seem petty and elitist to insist that public consecration involves the move to “the state of consecrated life” where private vows do not, it is built on the idea that the CHURCH is the one who consecrates (sets apart for service to God) such persons; the person does not do this themselves. However, there is no doubt there is a difference between the two theologically (and many would say, experientially as well!). Personally, I think the difference between the two can be spelled out in terms of charism and the expectations people are necessarily encouraged to have when the vocation is ecclesial and public. These differ between non-canonical hermits and canonical ones, but are rooted in an ontological change that occurs in the person themselves. With canonical consecration, one may be dispensed from one’s vows, but the consecration itself (as I have been told anyway) cannot be undone. Not so with non-canonical consecration of self.

Again, best wishes for a terrific Holy Week.

Thank you for all this information. Yes, I understand the distinction between canonical and non canonical vows, with the canonical vows changing the actual state of life of the person canonical vowed. I think a canonically vowed hermit can make an application to be dispensed from his/her vows very much as a canonically professed in areligious order sister or nun can be dispensed…a serious move however and asks dispensation by a Church Authority. But then to my mind to make a vow to privately to God who is the Highest Authority and then to dispense onself from that vow is a serious move also, although it does not ask seeking dispensation from a Church Authority.

and many would say, experientially as well!.

The experiential level, I should think, would be very much up to The Lord and His Grace granted no matter the state in life.

I am taking it you are canonically vowed in some may - may I ask why you chose canonical vows adopting the understanding that canonical vows are always public, rather than private vows? Did you understand you had a call to make canonical vows and was that your awareness?..if you are not a member of a religious order.Certainly if you are a member of a recognized religious order and have entered that Order I can then insight your likely reasons…having a vocation/call to that particular Order and charism. I will be quite understanding if you would prefer not to discuss your reasons and keep them private. It is a very personal question to ask:o

I would think to seek to be vowed under Canon 603 one would probably feel one is called to the eremetical life and its particular charism of a solitary life of assiduous prayer and penance. But I wonder why one would seek to be canonically vowed to this way of life as against private vows. And what I have come up with is that as a part of the call to the eremetical life and its charism one felt also a call to public profession or private?

Blessings this Holy Week…Barb:)
[/quote]


#17

#18

Barbara Therese: Thank you for all this information. Yes, I understand the distinction between canonical and non canonical vows, with the canonical vows changing the actual state of life of the person canonical vowed. I think a canonically vowed hermit can make an application to be dispensed from his/her vows very much as a canonically professed in areligious order sister or nun can be dispensed…a serious move however and asks dispensation by a Church Authority. But then to my mind to make a vow to privately to God who is the Highest Authority and then to dispense onself from that vow is a serious move also, although it does not ask seeking dispensation from a Church Authority.

The experiential level, I should think, would be very much up to The Lord and His Grace granted no matter the state in life.

I am taking it you are canonically vowed in some may - may I ask why you chose canonical vows adopting the understanding that canonical vows are always public, rather than private vows? Did you understand you had a call to make canonical vows and was that your awareness?..if you are not a member of a religious order.Certainly if you are a member of a recognized religious order and have entered that Order I can then insight your likely reasons…having a vocation/call to that particular Order and charism. I will be quite understanding if you would prefer not to discuss your reasons and keep them private. It is a very personal question to ask:o

I would think to seek to be vowed under Canon 603 one would probably feel one is called to the eremetical life and its particular charism of a solitary life of assiduous prayer and penance. But I wonder why one would seek to be canonically vowed to this way of life as against private vows. And what I have come up with is that as a part of the call to the eremetical life and its charism one felt also a call to public profession or private?]]

As my signature indicates, I am a diocesan hermit solemnly/perpetually consecrated under canon 603. I personally felt that canonical standing provided the necessary context which allowed me the freedom to live the vocation as fully, or with as great integrity as possible. Perhaps some can do this without the assistance of the church, canonical standing, etc, but I personally found that since the vocation itself is eccentric in the technical sense of that word (out of the center), and since everything in society militates against living this vocation fully, including most religious life, standing in law with all it implied (Rule of life, vows, superiors and a very specific accountability and set of expectations implied with regard to parish and diocese, as well as the church more generally) was a necessity.

Thank you for answering my questions so fully. I did notice that you are a canonically vowed hermit (or I presupposed such from your title of Sister) I was not too sure, however, if you were affiliated to a religious Order as I understand some hermits are.

Of course I come from a background in religious life (canonical and non-canonical both) and systematic theology, and I also waited for quite some time to be admitted to perpetual profession by my diocese under canon 603, so I was presupposed to see things thusly in some ways. I continue to (and am growing in) understanding the charism of the diocesan hermit as somewhat different than the non-canonical or even the canonical but monastery-based hermit. This goes beyond the idea of canonical standing as providing a context for freedom and integrity and adds elements I had not appreciated apart from my standing as diocesan hermit. As I noted above, I find that has to do with expectations. In particular canonical standing says my parish community and diocese can NECESSARILY have certain expectations of me where that is not true of the non-canonical hermit, nor of the hermit who is based in a community. While this certainly does not mean I live the life *better *than a non-canonical hermit, it means I am accountable in different way, and so too, am conscious of living out my commitment in ways which are directly responsible to those who see and relate to me as a diocesan hermit. I have a more detailed article or two on this in my blog: Notesfromstillsong.blogspot.com, in case you are interested.

Thank you for sharing all that. . There may be the formal/official expections and responsibilities and duties one has in one’s life including towards others and their expectations, and those that one imposes on oneself (or perhaps by one’s director) and all can be take with equal seriousness whatever they may be. There are the constant expectations, responsibilities and indeed accountabilities that The Gospel imposes. The important matter is to follow one’s call and vocation from God whatever it may be, for nothing transcends His Will. Thank you again for your very open and generous sharing giving insight into Canon 603 and may The Lord richly bless you in your vocation…Blessings this Holy Week…Barb:)

PS I too have both conventual and monastic experience in my background.


#19

Sister (or others), you may be able to confirm or otherwise this statement:

doihaveavocation.com/blog/archives/82

One final thought. Vows can remain private even when made in a Church ceremony.

[quote] An example of this can be when a priest receives private vows of an individual during Mass.

The mere fact that a vow is made in front of other people does not make it public in the eyes of the Church. Members of any group that is not recognized in the Church as a religious or secular institute who make vows in a ceremony or Mass in their community are not to consider themselves in the consecrated state because their vows are essentially private. Hence to call themselves consecrated men or women is misleading as they are not officially recognized in the Church as belonging to the consecrated state.
[/quote]

Is it permissable for a person to make vows at Mass, received by a priest. I do understand this would not change the lay status of the person, nor would it be a public nor canonical consecration.
Certainly my previous director seemed to be under the impression that this was permissable and an available option…I have just never checked it out.

I have read on the internet about this before and happily stumbled over a site (above) that also mentions this available option.
As I have understood things, one does not have to belong to any sort of secular institute, nor Third Order of some kind, to make such vows at Mass…simply a private individual of lay status making vows to the evangelical counsels that was neither a public (as The Church defines) nor canonical consecration.

If anyone can answer this question, it would be very helpful indeed to provide a link from a reputable source in The Church affirming that the above is an available option. Of course I am presupposing such an individual was under spiritual direction and had sort advice from a priest and had lived privately under the evangelical counsels (and perhaps a specific way of life/rule of life of radical Gospel commitment) for an extended period.

Thank you and again many blessings this Holy Week…Barb:)


#20

[Sister (or others), you may be able to confirm or otherwise this statement:

[URL=“http://doihaveavocation.com/blog/archives/82”]http://doihaveavocation.com/blog/archives/82

Quote:
One final thought. Vows can remain private even when made in a Church ceremony. Quote:
An example of this can be when a priest receives private vows of an individual during Mass.
The mere fact that a vow is made in front of other people does not make it public in the eyes of the Church. Members of any group that is not recognized in the Church as a religious or secular institute who make vows in a ceremony or Mass in their community are not to consider themselves in the consecrated state because their vows are essentially private. Hence to call themselves consecrated men or women is misleading as they are not officially recognized in the Church as belonging to the consecrated state. ]]

This is true. That vows are Public (I will use a capital P, but ecclesially there is only public or private) does not refer to whether or not the vows are made in a public setting. It refers to the fact that it is an official (public) act of the church which results in a new juridical or legal (Canonical) identity for the one Professed/consecrated. Vows are public when they constitute the person in a new and PUBLIC identity, no matter how hidden or private their life is. They receive both new rights and responsibilities according to canon and proper law (if they are in a community). While I am not sure whether it is correct to say that canonical and public are synonymous terms (or rather, I am sure they are generally not), it is the case here that a public profession IS a canonical one; this is so because an ecclesial act (an act of the Church herself) is conducted canonically.

The second part of the statement is also true, though I would try to nuance it some. The church recognizes that the term “consecration” has more than one sense or degree, I suppose one might say. An individual may consecrate themselves to God and this is a significant but not an ecclesial act in the sense I am using the term. However in response to public profession (where the PERSON consecrates herself to God in response to a call actually mediated to her BY THE CHURCH in the rite of calling forth), the Church then consecrates her PUBLICLY and in so doing initiates her into the CONSECRATED STATE. As already noted, consecration may be an act undertaken by an individual but it does not “raise” (sorry, this is the verb usually used) the person to the consecrated state; only the Church in receiving this consecration (profession) and responding with her own PRAYER OF CONSECRATION “raises” to the consecrated state. It takes both parts of the equation to accomplish this. Again, according to the Roman Rite of Profession, this is not something that is done at temporary profession, but only at perpetual or solemn profession. The prayer of consecration calls the Holy Spirit down on the person, and is missing from the rite of profession of temporary vows.

I would note there is some ambiguity is situations where people NEVER make perpetual vows, so there must be some qualifications to the general rule set out above. I cannot speak to those. According to the rite of profession, the act of consecration is accomplished or rendered definitive only at perpetual profession.


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