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In religious life, a person makes a lifelong commitment to belong to a religious community or order. As part of the commitment, the person makes three religious vows: a vow of chastity, poverty and obedience. 

Women in religious life are called sisters or nuns. Men in religious life are called monks, friars or brothers. Hundreds of different Catholic religious communities exist across the globe. Each community usually has a unique mission, determined by the founders of the community.

As Catholics, we believe that all people share in the priesthood of Christ by virtue of their Baptism. The first letter of Peter says "Let yourselves be built into a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood" (2:5). The church calls this the common priesthood of the faithful. Within this common priesthood, some people are called to unique participation in the mission of Christ through the Sacrament of Holy Orders to become priests. Their role is to serve the Christian community in the name of Christ and to represent Christ in the community.

Excerpts taken from the Catholic Faith handbook St. Mary's Press.

If you are discerning the call to religious life or priesthood, don't hesitate to talk to your parish priest or call the Archdiocese of St. Paul/Minneapolis for further information and guidance. Call 651-962-6890.