Saturday, June 19, 2010

Celibacy and the TOB

Thursday, June 17

Though we talked about the vocation of celibacy yesterday, I was able to witness it in action today through my interactions with two people who are consecrated religious.

Sister Olga is originally from Iraq, but now she works at Boston University. She discerned a call to celibacy and to the religious life. Her witnese allowed me to see in action how celibacy is one way that we can live out the spousal meaning of our bodies. This woman radiates joy! She has a passionate, authentic love for everyone around her, and because of this love, she is truly a mother. And I'm not talking about some kind of second-rate motherhood. No! She is a real mother. Her witness truly blew me away. She has not given up her femininity or surrendered her sexuality. She is living the true meaning of her feminine sexuality through her celibate vocation. She is truly a gift.

Today, I had the pleasure of talking with Brother David, who belongs to the same order as Brother Rich and who also lives in DC. I sat next to him at lunch and we had a simple conversation, getting to know each other. During this conversation, I felt absolutely sure that I was having an encounter with authentic love. John Paul II talks about how in the Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve "knew each other with all the peace of the interior gaze." As Brother David looked at me, I felt the peace of the interior gaze. There was such a true disinterestedness in his love for me. It was awesome!

Praise God for our celibate brothers and sisters!

1 comment:

  1. I am so glad that you wrote about your encounter with Br. David, because I had a similar encounter with a religious brother last semester and had been struggling to put it into words. I could not figure out why his gaze had seemed so significant to me, but it really affected me. What you said about authentic love and the interior gaze really sums it up (months later). It was like he was radiating peace and looking at me with the eyes of Christ, like he was seeing my soul and seeing something beautiful there. Wow! So powerful!

    Thanks for this post!