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Heavenly Father, after much prayer and reflection it is my belief that I can best serve you in the single state. Let me be true to my vocation to this life and never do anthing to sully it. As I freely give up the benefits of married life, I am aware that I also give up its difficulties and receive in turn the benefits of the single state. Enable me to appreciate the freedom at my disposal–from cares and concerns of spouses and children, from a highly structured life-style, and from the legitimate demands of family members.

Help me to make good use of the added time I have available. Inspire me to give of myself to others, to be an example to my married friends and a comfort to my single friends. May I ever realize that whether single or married our one concern should be to serve you each day and to serve others for your sake. Grant that I may be so attached to you that I may never feel lonely in my chosen state.

Source: The New Saint Joseph People’s Prayer Book 1993

Saint Zita (1218-1272), often depicted with a bag and keys, is the patronness of single laywomen, as well as domestic servants, maids, homemakers, lost keys, people who are ridiculed for their piety, rape victims, waiters and waitresses. St Zita was born in Italy.  At the age of 12, she became a servant. Her employers and fellow servants found her goodness and hard work irritating, and so, for many years, she was disliked, overworked and beaten as a result. Throughout all of it, St Zita remained peaceful. Her love and respect for her employers and fellow-servants eventually won them over and she was eventually placed in charge of all of the affairs of the house.

St Zita felt that her work and her employers were given to her by God. In addition to doing her work with great diligence, she rose early for prayer, participated in daily Mass with great devotion, and gave food to the poor. St Zita died at her employer’s house at 60 years of age after serving the family for 48 years.

St Zita’s feastday is April 27, a day that families celebrate by baking a loaf of bread:

INGREDIENTS

1-1/2 cups boiling water

6 Tablespoons soft shortening

1-1/2 cup honey

1 Tablespoon salt

2 packages active dry yeast

1/2 cup warm water (105-115 degrees)

2 eggs

1 cup wheat germ

5-1/2 cups all-purpose flour

DIRECTIONS

Combine boiling water, shortening, honey, and salt; stir until shortening melts. Cool to lukewarm. Dissolve yeast in warm water. Add yeast, eggs, wheat germ, and half the flour to lukewarm mixture. Beat 2 minutes on medium speed with electric mixer or 300 vigorous strokes with a spoon. Blend in remaining flour with a spoon. Dough will be sticky. Spread dough evenly in 2 well-greased loaf pans, 9 x 5 x 3 inches. Smooth tops by flouring hand and patting into shape. Let rise in warm place until 1 inch from top of pans. Bake at 375° for 45 to 50 minutes or until loaf sounds hollow when tapped. Crust will be dark brown. Remove from pans at once; brush tops with melted butter or margarine; cool on racks before cutting. Makes 2 loaves.

 

Recipe Source: The Cook’s Blessings by Demetria Taylor, Random House, New York, 1965

One of the categories that will be developed at the Catholic Single Vocation is “Stewardship.” Stewardship includes all of the ways we can give of ourselves (money, time, gifts and talents, and so on) to further Christ’s mission and improve the quality of life for all of humanity. There are so many crucial issues and charitable organizations that it often seems daunting to figure out how to make sense of it all. Where does a single person start to make sense of all of this? Realistically, how can just one person make a difference? Given all of the needs and options, where can one best place his or her time, energy and money to make the most difference? The forthcoming stewardship posts will address these questions.

I have introduced the Catholic Single Vocation as a place to support and celebrate men and women who have chosen to live a single vocation in the Catholic Church. Follow the “About” link above to see a list of objectives that will guide contributions to this site. In coming months, at least seven topic areas will be developed under the list of categories on the right side of the page. These topic areas include:

  1. Single Vocation – general issues related to living a Catholic Single Vocation.
  2. Prayer – prayers that are particularly relevant for single people.
  3. Saints and Role Models – stories of single people who have been living examples of how to live the Catholic Single Vocation.
  4. Stewardship – options and suggestions for social justice.
  5. Support – stories of what men and women are doing to support each other’s Catholic Single Vocation.
  6. Events – upcoming conferences, events and retreats related to the Catholic Single Vocation.
  7. Commitment – ways that men and women can extend and/or consecrate their single vocation commitment to God.

Additional topic areas may be developed as well. If there is something else that you would like to know about, please let me know!

Eternal God, from my mother’s womb you have known me more than I can ever know. I ask for the courage to live a holy life, that your hand guide my decisions and that your mercy be extended when I seek my own glory instead of yours. I ask for the wisdom to know your will for me, and like our Blessed Mother, I ask for the strength to say yes.  May I find you in every person I meet, and may my life so shine forth your goodness and love that each person may be led to you through Jesus, your Son, who is Lord, forever and ever. Amen.

The Catholic Church recognizes three paths for how human beings can choose to live their life: marriage, religious life, and single life. Marriage, one of the most frequently chosen paths for knowing and expressing the love of God, is consecrated in the Catholic Church through the sacrament of matrimony. Ideally, marriage vows are regularly nurtured by the couple, and recognized yearly with anniversary celebrations. 

The religious vocation includes priests who commit themselves to the church, and brothers and sisters who commit themselves to God in a religious community. For priests, their vows are consecrated in the church through the sacrament of ordination. Other religious make perpetual vows to God and their community on a yearly basis after years of discernment and preparation. Like married couples, religious members devote considerable time to nurturing their commitment to God, and they recognize their vows on a yearly basis with jubilee celebrations.

Unlike married and religious vocations, the single vocation does not have a special sacrament or yearly celebration. Often, the single vocation is disparaged as “left over” when marriage or religious life doesn’t work out. While the church acknowleges and is certainly concerned for the single vocation, rarely does the Catholic single vocation receive the attention, support and celebration that the other vocational paths receive. Even many Catholic Single groups and websites exist to help singles discern a religious vocation and/or to meet their future spouse, rather than celebrating and supporting the single vocation as a viable life choice.

In contrast, the purpose of this website is to celebrate and support the Catholic who has chosen the single vocation as the best and most joyful and fulfilling way to know and love God in the Catholic Church.

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