'On the physical and emotional level, celibacy is the ability to know oneself as sexual and to experience some considerable comfort with that knowledge. It is the ability to regard oneself as sexual without experiencing the internal or external demand to do something about it - neither the need or demand to make it go away, nor the need or demand to act it out. It is the choice not to act out one's sexuality in a genital or romantic way.
On the level of relationships, celibacy is the ability to cherish and nurture other people's being and becoming with establishing bonds of mutual emotional dependence with them. It means not to be married, and not to be pursuing the path which naturally leads to marriage. It is the ability to establish warm and deep relationships with others by loving them and being loved by them in a non-exclusive and non-possessive way. It is a way of loving which allows the celibate person to say, "They and I are better off for our having been together, but no worse off for our parting."
On the practical level, celibacy is a way of remaining significantly more available to cherish and nurture others' being and becoming because of the choice not to take on the responsibilities of establishing and maintaining one's own family unit...'
Keith Clark, An Experience of Celibacy, p.140.