Baptism, Confirmation and Eucharist are the Sacraments of Initiation and ground the common vocation of all Christ’s disciples: a call to holiness and to evangelize the world. This ‘universal call to holiness,’ however, is lived out in many different ways in the Church as we all strive to respond to God’s individual call to lay down our lives in service to Him and the Church. Hence, every Christian believer is given some ‘Call’ by God to be a priest, religious, consecrated, married, deacon, or to remain in the celibate life for the sake of the Kingdom.
A Priestly vocation is a call to lay down one’s life in service to Christ’s faithful. He is called to be a sign of Christ’s enduring presence to the Church and to the World, to lead the people in prayer, to teach and to sanctify, and to assist the laity in living out their call to holiness. In the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, priests serve as pastors of parishes, teachers at high schools, seminary professors, chaplains at prisons and hospitals; and various other roles.Learn More
Permanent Deacons perform Ministries of the Word by proclaiming the Gospel at liturgy, catechetical instruction and evangelization. They often have a high visibility in the local church community as a result of the Ministries of the Liturgy which they undertake — Baptisms, Weddings, Funerals and assisting at Sunday Eucharist. The diaconate has been from ancient times primarily a Ministry of Love and Justice. Deacons can be found ministering to prisoners, the divorced, those who are addicted, the homeless and poor. The Permanent Diaconate is truly a blessing to the church and to our local communities and continues to grow and thrive with the help of the Lord.Learn More
In Religious Life, one responds to God’s call to holiness and mission by joining others in community living and service to the people of God. Religious make vows of poverty, chastity and obedience, living the values articulated in the Congregation’s Constitution. They live a life of prayer and of sharing resources and efforts with those in need. Working with the poor is often a priority.Religious Life has two main types: those who emphasize a life of prayer and enclosure and those who emphasize ministry or works. In today’s Church, they are known as contemplative Nuns (women) or Monks (men) and apostolic Sisters/Brothers, respectively.Learn More
The Sacrament of Marriage is a partnership of the whole of life and love between husband and wife. Bonded by Christ himself, this Sacrament is ‘ordered to the good of the spouses and the procreation and education of offspring. (CCC 1601)’ This Sacrament is a reflection of the love between Christ and His Church, and is for the mutual strengthening and holiness of spouses that they might form a ‘domestic church’ and be sources of holiness and grace for all who come into contact with the family. For more information on the requirements for Marriage in the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, see your local pastor or visit the Family Life Office homepage.Learn More
The Church, according to Canon Law, recognizes several forms of consecrated life, including:
Religious Life: members make public vows and live community according to set constitutions.
Societies of Apostolic Life: members do not make vows; they do live community and take an oath of fidelity to their Constitutions
Secular Institutes: members do not live community; they live the values articulated in the constitutions; they live and work as leaven in the world.
Order of Consecrated Virgins: Members make a public vow of virginity; they do not live community; they assist the local Church through their ministries at the diocesan or parish level. Consecrated Virgins are directly under the authority of the Bishop
Hermits: They live a life of prayer and solitude; they pray for the Church and give witness to the life and holiness of the Church. They are under the direct authority of the Bishop.