DISCERNMENT: Looking at my capacity to live religious life
Here are some further questions that might help you discern your capacity to live religious life. These questions are based on the “9 signs of a capacity to live active religious life well” by Brother John D. Hamilton, CFX, “The built-in tensions in apostolic vocations,” Horizon, Volume 39, Number 1, Winter 2014, p. 11.
1. Are you aware of the world and persons around you (versus living a narcissistic lifestyle) and a capacity and desire to accept responsibility for yourself, for empowering others and for the life and direction of the religious community as a whole? Explain.
2. Are you willing and do you have the ability to enter into truly inter-formative dialogue with others—to generously offer direction and to receive direction from others? Do you have the ability to collaborate with others, to generate a shared common direction through respectful and receptive listening? Explain your “yes”
3. How aware are you, and comfortable with, your sexuality and the capacity for ordinary intimacy in daily life—appropriate self-disclosure, “into-me-you-see”—that is appropriate and inclusive relationships with both men and women ? Do you have a capacity to show care for those with whom you will live and to incarnate your capacity to love others in concrete acts of caring? Support your “yes”
4. Do you have a firm purpose and direction in life that includes sincere openness and flexibility of disposition? If yes, explain.
5. Do you think that you have a capacity for commitment to God, to the religious community at large, and to the specific persons with whom you will live?
REMEMBER, that if you are being called to consecrate your life to the Lord, the Lord gives you the strength to continue to develop all of these qualities.