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Joseph wrote:

Hi, guys —

I would like to start off by thanking you for answering a previous question I had asked.

  • Can someone who is a religious brother participate in secular activities (i.e. watching sports or playing video games) as long the items used are shared in common with the other brothers in the community?

In my discerning a vocation, my curiosity was sparked when I came across religious brothers.
I don't know very much about them, but I do know that they take vows (not promises) of poverty, chastity, and obedience.

Just as a footnote, I used the two examples because they are two common activities people participate in and not because those are two things that are keeping me from further exploring the vocation of being a religious brother.


  { Can someone who is a religious brother participate in secular activities as long it is shared? }

Mike replied:

Hi, Joseph —

I hate to disappoint you, but your question falls outside our area of expertise.

I've sent your question to two other third order Oblates who are friends of mine. If I receive a reply from either one of them, I'll forward it to you.

I'm guessing that a lot of it would depend on the rules for the order, and what the superior of that order would allow, or not allow, within the rules for their specific order.


Kathy LaPlante, our grammarian replied:

Hi Mike,

Here is the reply I got from someone who has been a Benedictine monk for over 30 years.

It's more than just sharing with the community. Basically, you have to enter religious life with a willingness to give all to God, and leave the rest to the superior and community.

For instance, there are some communities who, as a rule, watch no television, while others allow it to a greater or lesser degree. We don't, as a rule, watch television. Our previous abbot, however, had in years past allowed us to watch the Super Bowl. Our present abbot did not allow us to watch the last Super Bowl, even though the local team (the New England Patriots) were playing.


Joseph replied:

Hi Mike,

Thank you very much for forwarding this to me and answering my question.


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