What is a Religious vow?

A vow is a solemn promise made to God. The object of the vow must be good and doable for the vow to be valid. The person making the vow must understand the commitment of the vow and freely choose to bind oneself to it. The religious binds herself to live the evangelical counsels according to the Constitutions of her Institute.

We can learn what is meant by evangelical counsels by looking at the meaning of the words. “Evangelical” means from the Gospel. “Counsel” means recommendation, not a command. So, the evangelical counsels are recommendations Jesus gives in the Gospels to those who wish to follow Him by a narrower path and with undivided love. They are not required to get to Heaven, but those who are called are advised to say yes.

The Sisters seek to live the Gospel in a radical way and to bind herself more closely to Christ. Each of the counsels are firmly rooted in the life and teaching of Christ, and in the Gospel we find Him inviting (not commanding) those who are called (not everyone) to embrace the life of consecrated chastity (Matthew 19:12), evangelical poverty (Mark 10:17-30), and wholehearted obedience (John 8:29, Hebrews 10:7, Phil 2:8).