After at least four years of residential discernment, brothers eventually make four lifetime commitments to the Nashville Family of Brothers: family, vocational singleness, obedience, and simplicity.
Our commitment of family is a commitment to live permanently in the Nashville Family of Brothers and to see each other as family, fulfilling God’s design for human family by pointing us back to the permanence and intimacy of God’s family. This commitment is in response to discernment that God has called the individual to commit to the Nashville Family of Brothers as his family—a family he will not abandon relationally or geographically.
We are convinced that those called to vocational singleness need committed family just as much as married people. We believe a call to vocational singleness is a call to just as much human intimacy as married people and no great intimacy with God than married people. We all need to know who will greet us when we return home each day to share a meal and stories from our day—and we need to know that those same people will be there thirty years later.
Our commitment of vocational singleness is a commitment to give up romance, dating, marriage, sex, and children for the purposes of doing kingdom work that parents do not have the time or energy to do.
Scripture, 1500 years of Christian history, early Church Mothers and Fathers, Early Reformers, modern Protestant theologians, and the streams of Christianity that represent the majority of Christians today and throughout time have a strong consensus about vocational singleness: vocational singleness is distinct from the universal period of abstinent singleness. Like the vocation of marriage, vocational singleness is committed, permanent, has specific theological purposes, has specific practical purposes, and involves a provision of grace to do it well. Vocational singleness is a call to renounce romance, marriage, and sex for the purposes of doing Kingdom work mutually exclusive with raising children. Vocational singleness is of equal theological and practical beauty as marriage. Every person has the same inherent (and incomplete) capacity to do vocational singleness or marriage well, and everyone should ask God to which vocation He has called them. Our relational vocation is given and called, not chosen. And vocational singleness is a call to no deeper relationship with God or any less relationship with others. It is still a call to deep relationship in the context of committed family.