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People Who Don't Support

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Before you read this, I want to tell you that I understand we can all be irritable and disagreeable at times, and I know it is different for all of us, but sometimes these things really hurt me and make me sad. I've found something interesting. It seems as though most of the same people who have the "do whatever you want, it doesn't matter how many people you hurt or how much you ruin your life" attitude tend to be utterly opposed to a young woman or man feeling called to the religious life. I find it kind of hypocritical that people act like this because what not many people get is that this IS what makes me happy, and the main reason it does is because I've chosen to make His Will, my will.

Sigh. Well, just a thought.

"V=v." ~ St. Maximilian Kolbe

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[quote name='FutureCarmeliteClaire' timestamp='1330826825' post='2395920']
Before you read this, I want to tell you that I understand we can all be irritable and disagreeable at times, and I know it is different for all of us, but sometimes these things really hurt me and make me sad. I've found something interesting. It seems as though most of the same people who have the "do whatever you want, it doesn't matter how many people you hurt or how much you ruin your life" attitude tend to be utterly opposed to a young woman or man feeling called to the religious life. I find it kind of hypocritical that people act like this because what not many people get is that this IS what makes me happy, and the main reason it does is because I've chosen to make His Will, my will.

Sigh. Well, just a thought.

"V=v." ~ St. Maximilian Kolbe
[/quote]

FCC, for what it's worth, you're not alone. :console:

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I don't know if y'all are referring to people here on PM or to people in real life.

If you are referring to people in real life, it is probably because they don't know anything about modern-day religious life. They think to enter a religious order or the priesthood is to renounce one's sexuality and live as repressed, mean people for the rest of their lives. They think all nuns are naive and all priests do terrible things to children. This isn't entirely their fault. What popular culture portrays the religious life as is not the most accurate picture at all.

If it's people in PM, they might just be cautioning you not to decide absolutely right now that your vocation is such and such. They want you to really enter religious life if that is indeed your vocation, after much maturity and discernment with the help of a trusted priest/spiritual director.

Prayers for everyone discerning.

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Sounds more like she was talking about non-Phatmassers. This is what leads me to believe it:


[quote name='FutureCarmeliteClaire' timestamp='1330826825' post='2395920'] It seems as though most of the same people who have the "do whatever you want, it doesn't matter how many people you hurt or how much you ruin your life" attitude tend to be utterly opposed to a young woman or man feeling called to the religious life.
[/quote]

Am I correct in this assumption?

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[quote name='LaPetiteSoeur' timestamp='1330828983' post='2395949']
I don't know if y'all are referring to people here on PM or to people in real life.

If you are referring to people in real life, it is probably because they don't know anything about modern-day religious life. They think to enter a religious order or the priesthood is to renounce one's sexuality and live as repressed, mean people for the rest of their lives. They think all nuns are naive and all priests do terrible things to children. This isn't entirely their fault. What popular culture portrays the religious life as is not the most accurate picture at all.

If it's people in PM, they might just be cautioning you not to decide absolutely right now that your vocation is such and such. They want you to really enter religious life if that is indeed your vocation, after much maturity and discernment with the help of a trusted priest/spiritual director.

Prayers for everyone discerning.
[/quote]
Whoa. I was totally referring to people in real life. Especially relatives that are not Catholic or don't practice a faith. I would never say anything about the people on Phatmass like that... ever. I am not one of these teens who thinks they know all there is to know, I am just discerning, and you know, I am pretty sure of what I am called to do, but God's will is what I am seeking for, and I could feel quite differently in a few years... or in a few months for that matter.

No, at least for the people in my life, they know perfectly well what I am aiming for and what nuns and priests do, but it seems useless to explain over and over again that the media is corrupted, because these people don't care. They've been blinded by darkness and hypocrisy. I was just saying that they obviously do not want me to do what makes me happy. Sigh.

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Posted

It's the worst when parents don't support...

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Aww yeah I am sure it is, Pax


:console:

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Posted (edited)

[quote name='Pax_et bonum' timestamp='1330830202' post='2395964']
It's the worst when parents don't support...
[/quote]
:console: I am very blessed that I have supportive parents, it's relatives and friends that are my problem. My prayers are with you and those who's parents are not supportive of their vocation. Edited by FutureCarmeliteClaire

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Posted

It is hard when your parents, your family, and your friends that dont support you

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Sometimes nothing you can say will bring someone around, as much as you want them to accept your decision they can't or won't. In those cases you just have to accept that fact, keep moving forward, and pray that your actions will lead them to acceptance. It can be a long and hard process to move on from the fact that someone close to you is not going to accept your decision. It has taken me a lot of time and prayer to be able to somewhat move past that. It still hurts though.
I completely understand how difficult it can be to try to explain to someone who doesn't share our faith what religious life really is. If both parties don't accept even the basics of the faith then how can you explain to them something as complex as vocation?

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[quote name='TheresaThoma' timestamp='1330835083' post='2396012']
Sometimes nothing you can say will bring someone around, as much as you want them to accept your decision they can't or won't. In those cases you just have to accept that fact, keep moving forward, and pray that your actions will lead them to acceptance. It can be a long and hard process to move on from the fact that someone close to you is not going to accept your decision. It has taken me a lot of time and prayer to be able to somewhat move past that. It still hurts though.
I completely understand how difficult it can be to try to explain to someone who doesn't share our faith what religious life really is. If both parties don't accept even the basics of the faith then how can you explain to them something as complex as vocation?
[/quote]
Amen. And I have learned that, that sometimes talking doesn't work, and that after a certain point all you can do is pray.

"Preach the Gospel always, and when necessary, use words." ~ St. Francis

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Making God's will your own will is partly a matter of seeing the world through God's eyes. Can the words of these other people hurt God in his divinity? No, of course not. Neither, then, can they shake his decision to call you to His service, if that is in fact where He has called you. Moreover, think about how you will best convert them to your way of thinking. You certainly will not bring them to an encounter with Christ by having your peace stolen from you by cruel or unfeeling words, but by returning them peace for discouragement, a blessing for a curse, etc. By doing so "you will heap coals of fire on their heads," as St. Paul says. And, to borrow the words of someone a little less saintly, Marcus Aurelius,

"Begin in the morning by saying to thyself, I shall meet with the busy-body, the ungrateful, arrogant, deceitful, envious, unsocial. All these things happen to them by reason of their ignorance of what is good and evil. But I who have seen the nature of the good that is beautiful, and of the bad that is ugly, and the nature of him who does wrong, that it is akin to me not only of the same blood or seed, but that it participates in the same intelligence and the same portion of divinity, I can neither be injured by any of them, for no one can fix on me what is ugly, nor can I be angry with my kinsman, nor hate him..."

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[quote name='filius_angelorum' timestamp='1330835428' post='2396015']
Making God's will your own will is partly a matter of seeing the world through God's eyes. Can the words of these other people hurt God in his divinity? No, of course not. Neither, then, can they shake his decision to call you to His service, if that is in fact where He has called you. Moreover, think about how you will best convert them to your way of thinking. You certainly will not bring them to an encounter with Christ by having your peace stolen from you by cruel or unfeeling words, but by returning them peace for discouragement, a blessing for a curse, etc. By doing so "you will heap coals of fire on their heads," as St. Paul says. And, to borrow the words of someone a little less saintly, Marcus Aurelius,

"Begin in the morning by saying to thyself, I shall meet with the busy-body, the ungrateful, arrogant, deceitful, envious, unsocial. All these things happen to them by reason of their ignorance of what is good and evil. But I who have seen the nature of the good that is beautiful, and of the bad that is ugly, and the nature of him who does wrong, that it is akin to me not only of the same blood or seed, but that it participates in the same intelligence and the same portion of divinity, I can neither be injured by any of them, for no one can fix on me what is ugly, nor can I be angry with my kinsman, nor hate him..."
[/quote]
Very true, I've gotta be like Therese on this one... She was amazing, I am not... I just wish it wouldn't hurt me as bad as it does...

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I confess that, as a former adolescent myself, and the mother of three former adolescents, I am sometimes a bit disturbed when a [i]very[/i] young person makes a decision so radical as to want to enter religious life. Even at age 18, one often doesn't have the necessary wisdom or maturity for such a far-reaching decision. Life is so black and white [no pun intended], and everything is so intense, at this age. It takes quite a while to learn that there are only innumerable shades of gray. I think this is especially true for those who have recently converted to Catholicism.

By all means, investigate the option of religious life but don't close the door so vehemently on other paths until one gains a wider experience of life in general. One can truly serve God and mankind in so very many ways; formal religious life is only one of them.

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Posted (edited)

I would not personally actively discourage a young person from desiring religious life or the priesthood. It strikes me as similar to a young person in say their early teens wanting to be a fireman, doctor, policeman or nurse. The young are idealistic and some strive for very high ideals. If my sons had expressed a desire for the priesthood, I would encourage them to find out all they could about it and I would help them to do so.
Thankfully nowadays, the priesthood and religious life would not accept candidates under 18 years (and for the priesthood I think it may be older). Some religious orders would require a person to be in their twenties. Both the priesthood and religious life I think today are inclined towards accepting those who have had some experience of life. Also, nowadays, the discernment process once one actually enters is far more intensive and focused I think - and focused and intense on what is good for the particular person and the particular community. An active discerning of whether the individual is called by God or not to a particular community and discerned with a rich sense of accountability before God by superiors most often. There are exceptions of course I am sure.
Personally, if my boys had expressed an early interest in either religious life and//or priesthood and I had actively discouraged them, I would be fearful I was discouraging an actual vocation.
I expressed a desire to enter an active juniorate at 12 years of age and my mother, absolutely horrified and a convert, refused permission, telling me I could enter a convent at 16yrs if I still wanted to do so. A juniorate began after 7th Year of school (around 12years of age) and went through college and from there one went straigjht into religious life without even given a brief whiff of what life was all about. The Juniorate was almost as cloistered as religious life itself. I literally broke my heart to be refused parental permission to enter the Juniorate. I entered religious life (postulancy) at just 16yrs and it was a disaster and back in those days well prior to V2 it was (generally speaking) a disgrace and something of a 'shadow' fell over the young person who entered religious life or the seminary and then left the life. This no longer applies, nor the rather ridiculously low age of acceptance. Most often the problem was we were accepted far too young and were going into a way of life that was going to be totally demanding and we went in absolutely blind. We had no idea what religious formation or even religious life itself was all about. And once problems began in the life itself, it was a terrifying prospect to ask to leave, let alone be asked to do so. I think probably, there was a tendancy (again, a generalization) to try to hide problems rather than be quite open with one's superior about them...if indeed back in those days it would have done much good. It was (again generally speaking) very often not only a disgrace in the Catholic community generally to enter and then leave, it was a disgrace for the person leaving within the community itself.

I thank God indeed that all this has now changed.

At least nowadays because the information available about religious life is astounding to those of us who go back well before V2 and this is nothing but excellent and parents for example can educate themselves about religious life and the priesthood and are able to talk openly with their children about it and akin to their age of development. And without the fear that a child of 12 years or even 16 years would be accepted into religious life or the priesthood. It was back all those years ago necessary to have parental signed permission if one was under 21 years, but most Catholic parents then regarded a child going into the life as a badge of honour and attesting to their 'creditentials' as sound good Catholic parents - again there would have been exceptions. My Mum, for example, found religious life a very difficult concept to get her head around as a convert. Women, she felt, were created by God to be wives and mothers. My Dad was a cradle Catholic from a good Catholic home and he beamed with absolute pride when I entered and was devestated when I left. So was I although it was my choice! My Dad was very much the well preV2 formed Catholic parent. Edited by BarbaraTherese

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[quote name='Antigonos' timestamp='1330839389' post='2396041']
I confess that, as a former adolescent myself, and the mother of three former adolescents, I am sometimes a bit disturbed when a [i]very[/i] young person makes a decision so radical as to want to enter religious life. Even at age 18, one often doesn't have the necessary wisdom or maturity for such a far-reaching decision. Life is so black and white [no pun intended], and everything is so intense, at this age. It takes quite a while to learn that there are only innumerable shades of gray. I think this is especially true for those who have recently converted to Catholicism.

By all means, investigate the option of religious life but don't close the door so vehemently on other paths until one gains a wider experience of life in general. One can truly serve God and mankind in so very many ways; formal religious life is only one of them.
[/quote]

I have taught over two hundred adolescents, and I can tell you that if any of them told me they wanted to enter religious life, I would be simply grateful. If it is a mere childish obsession, I would thank God it wasn't some hoodlum boy or drugs or video games, and if it is not, I'd be afraid lest I go down in history as the evil teacher who tried to stop a saint from pursuing his/her vocation. One loses nothing by pursuing religious life, even at a young age, and if one is called, one gains everything.

For converts, you never know how much personal sacrifice and compromise it has taken for someone to get into the Church in the first place. They may, in fact, understand a lot more about the human face of the Church than, say, a cradle-Catholic from New York. There are no privileged seats in the Mystical Body of Christ.

In other words, if a young person or convert wants to pursue religious life, let their Church authorities or Superiors judge them, as it is their duty. If they are rejected, support them. If they are accepted, rejoice with them. "Weep with those who weep. Rejoice with those who rejoice," as St. Paul says to the Romans.

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[quote]It takes quite a while to learn that there are only innumerable shades of gray.[/quote]

I think those that have and do persevere in religious life have well learnt in the life itself (if not beforehand) that there are indeed innumerable shades of grey. That things are no always at all as they may appear. If I have understood your comment rightly, that is.

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FCC if makes you feel better, I was listening to EWTN on Friday and the little segment called "the Call" where priest tell of their Vocation Story, there was a priest who talked about how his Father was Very angry at him for becoming a priest that he basically estranged himself from him and didn't go to his ordination or his first mass. This went on for years and then years after being a priest he was made a bishop (I think bishop - or monsignor, can't fully recall) his dad went to confession then went to that mass. From that point on things changed and they were close again. His dad died 5 moths later.

I guess what I'm trying to say is as much as you want someone to understand what you are doing and why it may not be part of the Lord's will for them to reach that now. Perhaps they need to go through a conversion first for which they may not be ready. Don't lose faith and trust in His will not just for you but for your relatives and friends and just trust your vocation to him. I can tell you countless stories of sisters (recounted to me by them!!) whose parents were not at all supportive, from whom they were estranged but they focused on the cross and the Lord's will and in the end, it worked out.

Prayers for you!

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Not too sure how old you might be, FCC - but for this oldie (I am 66yrs old) as I go through life I meet those who are for me and those who for some reason are against me. It's all a learning process guided by God, our Faith tells us, and I slowly learn to thank God for those who are supportive and let the comments of those who do not to not 'get at me' so much so that it starts to really hurt and upset. We are all entitled to our opinion, which doesn't of course mean that every opinion is therefore a correct assessment and even my own opinions. In fact, I am learning to thank God for the difficult too, because they are the instruments of one learning about acceptance and patience even humility, learning to love those one finds difficult to like, and those who may present difficulties to me. I am learning about the difference between "like" and "love" and one can indeed love those we cannot like. It sort of begs the question : "What exactly is it to Love and how does it differ totally from "like"? We cannot like everyone that is reality, but we are called to love everyone, even our enemies. Virtue, it is said, is strengthened in adversity. It is easy to be virtuous when all is going well, not so easy to do so if things get a bit rough going. Not only this, but I now realize that I might be just as difficult to some as I might find others and this ratheroften crosses my mind with a smile if dealing with someone difficult.

I have been delighted the the number of young people on Phatmass here who are considering religious life - and I thank God that there are so many wonderful opportunties available nowadays to learn all about religious life and growing spiritually in the discerning journey. Phatmass is a great resource - and for me, for many reasons.

You will be in my prayers daily for those who are on the discernment journey re religious life and the priesthood in a special way.

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I know what you mean. The Religious life and Priesthood are my greatest joy, and when people tell me I'm a complete moron that obviously needs a date, my heart rate goes up. My uncle has been telling my parents to buy me a hooker since I was twelve or thirteen, and he recently stressed the dire need for it that I have. Quite honestly, after living the sinful life, I don't want to ever experience sexual pleasure again. I would much rather be a Priest or Franciscan Friar, where I may serve the Lord with an undivided heart, as Saint Paul says. I want so much to serve the Lord as a Friar or Diocesan Priest, and I don't care who says I'm an idiot that hasn't experienced the world yet. The problem is I was an idiot that experienced the world, and I came to my senses a year ago. I've had it with what the world has to offer. Now I want what the Lord has to offer.

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