God does not tend to tyrannically impose your state of life upon you, but rather gave you your own life
and will to use as you see fit. God has given you guidance in Public Revelation and Magisterial Teaching
by which to live your life. This guidance comes in two forms (I) The Love Commanded and (II) The Love
Counselled. The Love Commanded is what we are obliged to do in a Christian life; namely that you are
to love the lord with thy whole heart, mind, strength and soul, and to love thy neighbor as thyself. This
implies the keeping of the ten commandments and following the teachings and precepts of the Church
in all matters of faith, morals, and discipline. Now to examine information more pertinent to the particular
states in life.
The love counselled is that which Christ and his Church have taught that none are obliged to do, but
all are invited by Christ to follow. This love is harder but more pleasing to the Lord. They take the form
of the Evangelical Counsels. They are three Counsels of the lord and his saints to a life of (I) Poverty,
(II) Perfect Chastity, (Perfect in that it includes celibacy) and (III) Obedience. This is also called the religious
life, and is proclaimed dogmatically by the Council of Trent to be a better and more blessed state than
Matrimony. This is not to say that matrimony is bad but rather is the lesser and more immediate of two
goods the lord has offered to his children; one state focused on what is legitimately good in this life,
the other exclusively oriented towards the goods of the world to come.
Now another matter is brought up in your post, that of the priesthood, and this is a horse of a different
colour. While we are free to seek the Religious or Matrimonial state, as this is only seeking to use rightly
the gifts the Lord has freely given us, we must be more careful in the matter of the priesthood which
St. Paul has said is only for those, “called as Aaron was.” What then does this mean for us practically? Be
not afraid, you won’t be left in the same mess of guessing Gods ineffable will for you. Rather, If you feel
A strong attraction to the priesthood and there are no obvious impediments, then you have a probable
vocation and need to apply to either a diocese or order and let THEM discern YOU and not the other way
around. Remember, God called Aaron indirectly through Moses, so if you are called to the Priesthood God
will call you, as Aaron was, indirectly through a bishop.
I hope I helped, and I submit this to you with a filial obedience to the Church.
If she is shown to condemn any of what I have said I retract it implicitly.
(I) Holy and Ecumenical Council of Trent Session XXIV CANON X.-“If any one saith, that the marriage state is
to be placed above the state of virginity, or of celibacy, and that it is not better and more blessed to remain
in virginity, or in celibacy, than to be united in matrimony; let him be anathema.”
(II) Matthew 19:10-12 and First Corinthians Chapter 7. Please read the relevant notes for both passages.
(III) Vocation: Discernment or Commitment? by Fr. Joseph R. Upton published on Pg. 71 of the August/September
2011 Issue of the “Homiletic and Pastoral Review”. Which is a great magazine that I heartily recommend anyone in
or considering a religious or priestly Vocation subscribe to.