Is God truly calling my boyfriend to return to the seminary?


#1

I have been with my boyfriend for over two years, and we have been practicing chastity. About a year or so before I met him, he had left the seminary. He was there for about three years, and left the seminary for a variety of reasons, including a desire to have a family. We have been dating for over two years now with the intention of marriage and family eventually.

About three weeks ago, my boyfriend lost his job as a social worker due to an unfortunate mistake he made. He also lost the internship associated with his Master's program. Between his job and internship, he worked nearly 70 hours/week. Besides church, soccer, myself and his family, this was his life.

Two days ago, he told me that he's been thinking about returning to the seminary. He said he's been considering this for about three to four weeks, and he's praying and talking with God in order to discern whether this is truly God's call or if he is just creating it.

I do believe that he is confused, but I am frustrated. From the very beginning of our relationship, my boyfriend and I have discussed the possibility of him wanting to return to the seminary. Every discussion has ended in my boyfriend's assertion that he loves God, but he wants marriage and family, and he can serve God in other ways. Even after telling me he is considering a return to the seminary, my boyfriend told me that he does still have the desire to have a family.

I am concerned about my boyfriend, and as his best friend, have shared my concern with him. I have encouraged him to continue to pray and to perhaps speak with a Father whom he trusts and/or visit local seminaries, including the one he attended. But at the same time, I do not know how serious he is about this, because he has been applying for new jobs. He knows that if he enters the seminary, he will not be able to keep a job. I worry that losing his previous job and internship has really rocked my boyfriend's world. I have always encouraged him to build his relationship with God, and I still do encourage this. I am also praying that he is able to gain clarity, and I am praying to have faith in God's love. Quite honestly, I am in shock. I want him to be able to discern if God is truly calling him to the seminary, but I also love this man dearly, and I have wanted and still want to grow old with him. He is an amazing soul and would be a wonderful priest, or a husband & father.

We have agreed to be friends in the meantime, and to give one another space to think and pray.

I am looking for guidance on how to best support him while he discerns whether returning to the seminary is God's call for him? Also, does anyone know of any specific saints to whom to pray, either to help him discern God's calling or to help me have faith, patience and love?

Thank you & have a blessed day!


#2

my prayers go out to you and your boyfriend, this most be very hard for you. it’s also a lonely place for your boyfriend as only he can discern what God is calling him to do.


#3

I’ll be praying for you and for your boyfriend. These are two patrons of vocations pray to them that they will help him decide what he needs to do and that they will give you the grace needed to accept his decision.

* Alphonsus Maria de Liguori
* Infant Jesus of Prague

God bless


#4

My gut feeling, from reading your short synopsis of this situation, is that your boyfriend is running away from what he perceives as failure. He quit the seminary, and now he wants to quit the lay life and run back to the seminary.

Hopefully he'll sort it all out. You sound like a good woman, he'd be foolish to let you go.


#5

[quote="Middleman, post:4, topic:194635"]
My gut feeling, from reading your short synopsis of this situation, is that your boyfriend is running away from what he perceives as failure. He quit the seminary, and now he wants to quit the lay life and run back to the seminary.

Hopefully he'll sort it all out. You sound like a good woman, he'd be foolish to let you go.

[/quote]

He would be foolish to let her go unless it is truly what God is calling him to do then he would be foolish to stay.

Maybe he did run away from the seminary but that could mean that is where he is called to be and he ran away.

I suggest that he get a good spiritual director to work with while he discerns this.

We must remember that we are only getting one side of the story here, we cannot know the full truth of the matter.

No advice should really be given here as we do not know what is going on.


#6

[quote="ByzCath, post:5, topic:194635"]
He would be foolish to let her go unless it is truly what God is calling him to do then he would be foolish to stay.

Maybe he did run away from the seminary but that could mean that is where he is called to be and he ran away.

I suggest that he get a good spiritual director to work with while he discerns this.

We must remember that we are only getting one side of the story here, we cannot know the full truth of the matter.

No advice should really be given here as we do not know what is going on.

[/quote]

The OP asked for opinions. My opinion is that the boyfriend is considering running back to the seminary after experiencing a personal failure in the the world, as a layperson. He wouldn't be the first person running from life's troubles into a religious vocation.

Naturally, the person in question should look for real life guidance, that goes without saying. ;)


#7

It is dangerous to give opinions with only one side of the story.

I could color my story to get a certain response very easily.

I am not saying that the OP is doing this but it is in the realm of possibility, hence I do not give advice over the internet.

He started out at the seminary so my take, if I was to give one, was that he ran away from that one into his current situation. If he had not been in the seminary to begin with then I might agree with you.


#8

[quote="ByzCath, post:7, topic:194635"]
It is dangerous to give opinions with only one side of the story.

I could color my story to get a certain response very easily.

I am not saying that the OP is doing this but it is in the realm of possibility, hence I do not give advice over the internet.

He started out at the seminary so my take, if I was to give one, was that he ran away from that one into his current situation. If he had not been in the seminary to begin with then I might agree with you.

[/quote]

It may be that he just tends to be a quitter. He's fine as long as it's clear sailing, but when the going gets rough he wants to bail out.


#9

middleman maybe it's time for you to be quiet.


#10

ByzCath, Thank you for your honest reply. You are right, my account is very one sided. It is hard to tell what is truly going on, only God knows. Therefore, it is quite hard to give any advice whatsoever. I do appreciate the posts that have been made, please pray that my boyfriend is able to discern and follow God’s will. He deserves what will make him happy, and I do believe that it is extremely important that he follow God’s calling for him. I have learned much while with him, and we will remain friends no matter what he decides. I feel blessed that you all have been supportive of my situation. Thank you.


#11

[quote="hfleurette, post:10, topic:194635"]
ByzCath, Thank you for your honest reply. You are right, my account is very one sided. It is hard to tell what is truly going on, only God knows. Therefore, it is quite hard to give any advice whatsoever. I do appreciate the posts that have been made, please pray that my boyfriend is able to discern and follow God's will. He deserves what will make him happy, and I do believe that it is extremely important that he follow God's calling for him. I have learned much while with him, and we will remain friends no matter what he decides. I feel blessed that you all have been supportive of my situation. Thank you.

[/quote]

This is also a time for you to discern. You may be called to marriage but is this the right guy. I would suggest that you speak with a spiritual director also if you can not find one speak with your pastor.


#12

hfleurette, you may have some advices from here and I will not give you some advice but I want to share my situation with you that we have similar situation but the position who want to join religious life is me, and my fiance is confused as you may feel it.

The best thing that you both can do, pray and pray but on the other hand your boy friend should try to move on if he trully want to go back to seminary. Which I mean, he will not know the answer of God's will if he doesn't seek for it.

And for your side, support him as it's to show your love for God and him. And discern your self as ByzCath suggested.

You are in my prayer.

Wina


#13

Give him some space (lots of it) and send him to a good spiritual director, maybe someone new who can look at the situation with a fresh eye. He has to pick one or the other and you should not influence the decision in any way.


#14

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