EWTN Catholic Q&A
Religious Vocation
Question from Unsure on 09-19-2012:

Hi Dr. Geraghty,

I'm not sure if this is the right section to post this question, sorry if it isn't.

I have a question regarding whether or not God is calling one to the religious life. When I was in high school, I was on a religious retreat through my school (I went to Catholic school) and during the retreat I had a feeling that God may be calling me to be a nun. But I was scared and I always wanted to get married someday. So, I prayed to him "No God, please don't call me to be a nun. I don't want to be a nun." The feeling went away.

Years later now, I feel that if God were to call me I may listen and become a nun if that's what He really wants me to do. However, I've recently been diagnosed as having anxiety and mild OCD. Because of this new knowledge of my mental state, I'm not even sure if what I felt years ago was really God calling me or just a manifestation of my anxiety.

So, my question is, how do I know if God is calling me? How do I differentiate between God's call and anxiety/OCD. I love God with all my heart. I've always tried to be faithful even through times of hardship. I do believe there is a possibility that God would want me to be a nun, but I want to be sure.

Also, I was wondering, did I offend God years ago when I said I didn't want to be a nun? I would feel awful if I did. Thanks for your time.


Answer by Richard Geraghty on 10-21-2012:

Dear Unsure,

God knows who you are. He knows that you did not give yourself this OCD. You just happen to have it.So continue to say your prayers and not worry too much about the future. You didn't do anything wrong in wanting to get married. Just keep saying your prayers and get some peace in your mind and heart.

Dr. Geraghty