Category Archives: Vocations and States in Life

Vocations and States in Life

There are four states in life through which the faithful may sanctify themselves: the priesthood, the religious life, Holy Matrimony, and the chaste single state. The priesthood is a sacred office in the church, which one is only surely given through the “canonical call” of the bishop at ordination. A religious vocation is a life consecrated by vow to the evangelical counsels of poverty, chastity, and obedience. If not called to the religious life or priesthood, a man or woman has to make one of two choices: the married state, or the chaste single state. Whatever state one chooses, he must pursue it as a stable form of life through which he can sanctify himself. Of course, before one chooses a state in life, one should seek the counsel of a trusted spiritual director, reflect carefully and prayerfully on this most important of all decisions, and patiently await the answer that God will eventually plant it in the heart.

Many times reading about the saints, or other devout Catholics who made their mark in the history of the Church, can be of great help in discerning a vocation. The articles in this section provide the kind of information that younger readers will find very helpful in choosing the right state of life and older readers will find beneficial in fulfilling the state in life to which they are already committed.

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The Vows and Oaths of Christendom

In a conversation with some of our conference speakers, who are also all contributors to this web site, the question “What is Christendom?” was presented for our consideration. The hope was expressed that these writers would each offer his thoughts on the subject in future articles. Upon reflection, I thought of answering this question indirectly, by replying to another question, “What makes Christendom?” To that … More →


Posted in Catholic Living, History, Politics and Society, Spiritual Life, Vocations and States in Life, «Ad Rem» A Weekly Email Message from the Prior | Leave a comment
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The Power and Glory of the Priesthood

A dedicated and much loved Catholic priest, who has been ordained just over a decade dies at the age of forty-nine. It seems like a tragedy, especially since many were dependent on him for the traditional liturgical life that he, with a small handful of others, were spreading themselves thin to provide for a scattered flock in southern Louisiana. But our purpose in life is … More →

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Everything Old Is New Again

The past five decades have seen religious life in the Catholic Church go into two very different directions. On the one hand, in the wake of Vatican II, many orders – especially of women – jettisoned their unique habits and rules (and in the case of the Dominicans and Carmelites, their liturgical rites). This revolutionary era was immediately followed by an enormous drop off in … More →


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Some Good News

On Monday, May 13, Brother Joseph Mary professed his perpetual vows. The following “letter” concerns this wonderful event in our community’s life. The previous day saw nine innocents make their First Holy Communion in our chapel. Please also see the IHM Chapel updates: Interior Progress, Sanctuary Gates, and Almost Ready for Occupancy Permit. My Dear Jesus, What a beautiful thing is the religious profession of … More →


Posted in Saint Benedict Center in Richmond, New Hampshire, The Slaves of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, Vocations and States in Life, «Ad Rem» A Weekly Email Message from the Prior | Leave a comment
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Patriarchy and the Defenseless

On January 25, 500,000 pro-lifers marched on the Mall in Washington D.C. in defense of unborn human life. Four days before that, the most progressivist, pro-abortion, homosexualist president in American history gave his second inaugural address. In that address, Mr. Obama equated the “love” that “our gay brothers and sisters” have for one another with real married love between a man and a woman. He … More →


Posted in Culture Wars, Current Issues in the Church, Marriage and Family, Polemics, Spiritual Life, Vocations and States in Life, «Ad Rem» A Weekly Email Message from the Prior | 2 Comments

Two Catholic Sisters, Siblings, 98 and 96, Die One Day Apart in Same Home

That’s not all. Sister Jean Marie Wheeler and Sister Elaine Wheeler were the last living of five Wheeler girls, all of whom were religious, four were Daughters of Charity. MyFoxdc.com: They were born sisters and worked as Roman Catholic sisters for decades before spending their last years living in the same upstate New York residence for nuns. Read more here. Share, Bookmark, Like: Facebook, Twitter, etc.

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Two Sisters Profess Final Vows: Photos

The IHM School site has a photo gallery from the March 25 profession of two of our sisters. Please join us in thanking God that Sister Maria Rosaria and Sister Marie Gabrielle took their final vows as Slaves of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Share, Bookmark, Like: Facebook, Twitter, etc.

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Posted in Announcements, Columns, Saint Benedict Center in Richmond, New Hampshire, The Slaves of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, Vocations and States in Life | 2 Comments
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Cloistered Traditional Dominicans in Cajun Country

My recent trip to New Orleans and its environs was superlative. The talk I gave was graciously received. It was a real joy to see some old friends and meet new ones besides, like the traditional priests and religious in whose company I was privileged to spend a few days. Father Wilfredo Comellas is an old school friend, and now offers the Traditional Mass for … More →

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Sister Teresita: 84 Years in the Same Cistercian Cloister

I wish they would leave her with God in silence and peace. Rorate Caeli: Sr. Teresita has spent 84 of her 103 years within the walls of the cloistered convent of Buenafuente del Sistal (Guadalajara) [Castille-La Mancha, Spain], which gives her the right to be considered as one of unbreakable faith. A member of the Cistercian order, and a superior for over 20 years, Sr. … More →

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The Innate Qualities of the Child

Father Reginald Garrigou-Lagrange, O.P. (1877-1964) was one of the greatest theologians of modern times. He was a staunch anti-modernist, who engaged and exposed the twerpy upstarts responsible for the neo-modernist Nouvelle Théologie (“New Theology”). Much more than a controversialist, the Dominican Friar could write of the deepest spiritual truths with a relish and lucidity that make his theology engaging to study. In a series of … More →


Posted in Spiritual Life, Theology, Vocations and States in Life, «Ad Rem» A Weekly Email Message from the Prior | 12 Comments

What Is It, Then, To Be a Priest? – Some Examples From The Culture of Catholic Literature and Their Effects

This essay is dedicated to Father Michael Jarecki, who loves the Blessed Mother very much, and is himself very beloved — and, he has for many, many years now, remained so deeply faithful to Christ, knowing both the tears of sorrow and also the tears of joy. It was completed 18 September 2009, the feast of Saint Joseph Cupertino, and the anniversary of the death … More →


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Not Enough Room in Ugandan Seminary for Vocation Increases

Catholic Online reports: In Uganda, the number of vocations is rising each year. According to Vatican statistics, every fifth seminarian worldwide now comes from Africa.  Read full article here. Share, Bookmark, Like: Facebook, Twitter, etc.

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A Word To Parents

How few parents realize the immense power they possess for moulding the character and shaping the future career of their children. The tiny babe just born to them comes from God’s hand with vast possibilities for good and evil; like the young forest tree, its soul may be trained to grow straight and beautiful, or bent and twisted, made horrible and deformed. Share, Bookmark, Like: … More →

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A Vocation

The Religious State can be the portion only of an elite: that is to say, of chosen souls. A special vocation is required of those who aspire to walk this narrow and uphill path. Share, Bookmark, Like: Facebook, Twitter, etc.

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The Better Part: The Religious or Priestly Vocation

(This was written in preparation for a series of conferences on vocations and states in life that I gave at Saint Benedict Center in the Spring of 2005. Please see the end of this piece for a small table of contents with links to the other conferences.) In the previous conference, we introduced the general subject of states in life. We said that the importance … More →

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