This vow translates concretely into respect for our body and prudence in our human relations (Regional Congolese Statutes, Int. 1.25).
Managing relationships in such a way as to remain faithful to a celibate commitment is a constant challenge. In the affairs of the heart one can easily be deceived. How does someone discern if a friendship has transgressed the norms of celibacy? There are signs. If the expression of affection with the friend becomes more and more physical, erotic or genital; if a person resents sharing the friend with others; if one possess the friend as one’s own, feeling obligated to regard the person as the most important thing in one’s life; if someone waits for or demands particular responses of friendship as proof of affection; if interest in the community suffers because of the emotional connection with the friend; if someone loses the taste for the spiritual dimension of life, particularly for prayer--one has to admit that the friendship is not of Christ and have the courage to abandon it.
If the machete is well sharpened, you have to walk carefully. (Ntomba)
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