Oblates of Saint Brigid
What is an Oblate?
The word oblate comes from the Latin oblatus – meaning an offering, someone, or something that is offered. A religious oblate is a layperson who feels called by God to live out their faith in a specific way by associating themselves with a monastic community. This association is often formalized through a commitment ceremony, and it involves living out a lifestyle or following certain spiritual practices that are guided by the monastic tradition of the community.
An oblate's vocation is a calling from God to live in a certain way, and for a religious oblate, this way of life is connected to a monastic community. This can include things like regular prayer, meditation, and service to others, as well as committing to living a certain lifestyle or following certain spiritual practices. Being an oblate is a way to deepen one's spiritual life, while living in the world, it is not a way to become a monk or nun. It's a way to live a monastic spirituality in the midst of the world, and to join one's prayers and efforts to those of the monks or nuns.
To be an oblate is a vocation, discerning your response to a call from God. It is a means of living a life of mutual blessing, between a person in the world and the monastics who have “left the world.” It is also a life of witness, carrying the values of monastic life into the world by applying the teaching of the Scriptures, as interpreted in the Typikon, in their daily lives.
Who may be an oblate?
Any Eastern Christian or one has an Eastern theological understanding in good standing, lay person or ordained, married or single, who is at least 21 years of age is welcome to explore life as an Oblate of Saint Brigid.
Inquirers should have a sincere desire to deepen their Eastern Christian observance and life of prayer, and a willingness to accept the challenge to “prefer nothing whatsoever to Christ himself.” They must be willing to devote time and energy to learning the distinctive values and practices that give shape to monastic and oblate life and be willing to place the things that pertain to their oblation under the guidance of the Oblate Superior.