Solitary Bird (solitarybird) wrote,
Solitary Bird

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The gauntlet

I received the letter from the Diocese of New York, outlining the steps I must take to be considered as an aspirant for the vocation of a Solitary.

Their newly expanded requirements are extensive, including a written statement (which I can see is going to be quite long), recommendations, evaluations, interviews, medical and psychiatric checks, and a background check. Wow.

Of some concern is a requirement that I be "debt-free." Who, in this day and age, is debt-free? Of course I am not debt-free, I own a modest condo and have a mortgage. What's this about? If I were joining a monastic community I could see it; but since, as a Solitary, I'm responsible for my own upkeep, why should the Diocese care if I am debt-free?

The written statement is to include...

a) a description of what you believe the Solitary witness is... what it involves... and how you believe it differs from other lay vocations,
b) how you learned of this baptismal witness and how long you have considered applying for it (i.e. why this ministry? why now?),
c) a review of your life, your spiritual journey, your ministry now & a copy of your Rule of Life,
d) a review of your life in community, and
e) a description of your work and income, with a signed statement that you are debt free and are registered with social security."

Looks like I'd better get to writing.
Tags: discernment, process, rule of life, vocation

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