I have a girlfriend but I feel called to religious life. If I go into training for the priesthood can I still keep my girlfriend in case it becomes clear that I don’t actually have a vocation?
Although it might be difficult to break up with your girlfriend, the option of holding on to the relationship while trying out religious life is not feasible. Jesus is clear about this when he asks his followers to give up everything first and then follow him. In other words, in order to be fully attached to him and his will for you, you have to become detached from all that stands in the way of your deepest desire to follow Him. Another important consideration here is that it’s just not fair on your girlfriend. Surely no partner in a relationship could be expected to wait patiently while you decide if you are going to stay with her or not.
Most popular questions
- Can a gay man become a priest?
- I feel I have a specific charism to youth outreach. Can I live this charism out as a priest, or must I follow the charism of the order I join?
- Why are there so many different religious organisations?
- What does discernment mean when we’re talking about vocation?
- Are religious orders different from one another? If so, how are they different?
- Why are there so many different religious orders?
- What is a deacon and how is it different than a priest?
- What can I do as a priest that I cannot do as a layperson working for a charity or NGO?
- As a priest if I decide that I no longer want to do something, such as work in a specific parish, do I have any say or is it all out of my hands?
- Can I leave the priesthood if I want, and is there any support if I do?