A theology teacher at Bishop Dwenger High School in Fort Wayne, IN, 38-year-old Jessica Hayes has a special love for her faith.
It was so deep for her that she spent years soul-searching and praying for guidance in her life.
“I had been praying about it for years, trying to seek God’s will for my life and not really finding it in any of the paths that I sought before. It was really a consideration of which things brought me the most joy and where my greatest happiness was.
It seemed that all of those loves converged on this one thing where I could still be living in the world and be a part of the lives of my students and be studying and teaching and involved in a parish life, but I could also give myself more completely by making this total commitment of my life to serve the church in whatever capacity is needed and whatever capacity my own gifts are available for,” Hayes said.
Hayes made the decision to become a consecrated virgin and to wed Jesus Christ in a ceremony held in the Catholic Church:
A consecrated virgin is different from a nun in that they don’t live in a convent or take vows of poverty and obedience, reports the Daily Mail. Like nuns, however, they do take a vow of chastity.
Hayes hopes her example will inspire others:
“I’m so happy to have had so many witnesses (at the wedding) because there may be others that the Lord is calling in this way that have now heard of this life and can consider it in their prayer.”
She acknowledges that now that she has made such a public commitment to living a life of chastity and never being able to marry another living person, she will feel “an encouragement” to “live consistently” in her words and deeds that express her love for Jesus.