The ‘unconventional vocation’ of single life – Lindsay Nakhoul.

11 August 2023

August 6 – 13, 2023 is National Vocations Awareness Week. Catholic Outlook spoke to people across our Diocese about their vocational calling.

Lindsay Nakhoul is many things to many people. A daughter, aunt, friend, carer, catechist, retreat leader, women’s advocate, charity group organiser, colleague and more. She is also one to buck many societal trends by taking up the vocation to single life and minister to young women.

Growing up in a big, loving Lebanese Maronite Catholic family, Lindsay feels fortunate that she was raised in the faith, and equally that she has the opportunity to live out her faith every day through her work, family and extra-curricular activities.

Like many migrant communities here in the Diocese of Parramatta, the expectation of parents is for their children to marry and multiply. Some might think it’s because Lindsay is one of eight siblings that she is able to fulfil her vocation to single life, but really, she says it’s the support and love of her parents that truly help her focus on her vocation.

“My parents understand me and my faith journey. They know that we always need to aim and only focus on the will of God. That may or may not mean being married. They also see, as a single woman all the good [I’m able to do]. There’s so much that makes them proud.

“I am forever grateful and blessed [for my parents]. I know they have my back and always will no matter what I did in my life.”

Lindsay’s vocation has allowed her to be a carer for a dying aunt, help with her many nieces and nephews and be the constant confidant that her friends need. In addition, Lindsay is very involved in her parish whether that was youth group when she was younger, parish events, children’s liturgy and more. But ministering to young women is where she derives joy. For the last 10 years Lindsay has taught religious education to public high school girls every week. She also leads retreats and camps for young women with the Schoenstatt Sisters in Mulgoa for over 15 years now.



“I love the fact that I am ministering to teenage girls and young women.” It brings her joy but also comes with many challenges.

“If we look at our young women and the pressure that they are under – they are expected to look a certain way and act a certain way, all to be able to fit in to society. And knowing that God created them with so much love, and that they are worth more than society’s expectations. It’s when I’m at my happiest. When we build up young women to know that they are worth more.”

Lindsay recalls a time she was leading a retreat and a young girl was told to go by her parents.

“The theme of the weekend was on the dignity of women. This one girl was NOT there by choice. But after a weekend of speaking about the importance of women, faith and their value to society, this girl gave me the biggest hug and said ‘I can’t thank you enough. You’ve opened my eyes to something. You’ve opened my eyes to the faith.’ I still get goosebumps when I think of that moment.”

Making people aware that it is ok to be called to the single life is something that Lindsay feels should happen more.

“I come across so many women in in their 20s and 30s that feel a little bit lost. They appreciate there is not enough spoken about the single vocation. The reality is that a lot of focus is on religious life or marriage, which is great. But when single life is presented to these women, they feel so appreciative. They feel that ‘yeah, I’m single but I’ve still got so much value and there’s still so much I can do and put into society’.”

Lindsay can empathise with these women. She was once engaged and also discerned a religious vocation. She also had a strong desire to be a mother. But it was the wise counsel of an old priest that helped her.

“I told him that I love children. And he said ‘Lindsay, you know, Mother Teresa had no children, and the world called her mother.’ It was this conversation that cemented that, whether it’s being married, single, or religious life, I would focus on God’s will and where he was calling me.”

And that is Lindsay’s advice to any person seeking their vocation.

“My advice is simple. Just live each day as it is. In your prayer life, just constantly say ‘Your will be done’. It is as simple as that. I think people overcomplicate it sometimes.

“The reality is some will get married, some will join a religious community, and some will not. It is about ensuring that society or things going on around you, do not define you. The reality is, and I can’t stress this enough, as Christians, as people of God, He will give us what He knows is best for us. So we need to surrender to that, every day. As Catholics, we are called to be the face of Christ and encounter every person, whoever they are, whatever their background may be. I’m called to love. I’m called to serve. And God will do the rest.”

To find out more about retreats held at Schoenstatt, please visit:

If you know of anyone who is interested in, or would like to help at girls camps please contact

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