For information and resources on the Consecrated Life, available
from the US Conference of Catholic Bishops,
for an excellent web page of Discernment Resources.
- How do I know that God is calling me to
- Do I love God enough to give God my life as a witness to
God's love for all people?
- Do I desire to live simply?
- Do I have the ability to relate well with others as well as
to be happy alone?
- Am I generous with time and talent?
- Do I desire to love all rather than to have an intimate
relationship with one person?
- Do I desire to form a deep relationship with Jesus through
personal prayer as well as through service?
- How should I discern my options?
- Talk with a religious sister.
- Educate yourself about different
religious communities (cloistered; apostolic; lay institute; charism of
- Share you questions with someone
you trust and ask for their opinion.
- Contact one of the persons
listed below or any community listed in your diocesan directory. (Call
Diocesan Vocations Office in your area.)
- Ask to visit some religious
communities in your area.
- Look at the convergence of --
- interior factors: attraction,
talent, interest, experience, desires, ideals, realistic fears, awareness of
- exterior factors: people I
admire, work that interests me, needs that move me, structures that facilitate
exploration, opportunity presenting itself, invitations of another.
- Where can I read stories of current Sisters' and their
- Sister Stories -
- We have been called to serve God. After much discernment,
that call led each one of us to make vows before God, our family, friends and
other Sisters to serve God's people for the rest of our lives. Although we share
that same choice for our lives, our individual stories are very different.
- Each of the sponsoring Congregations of this website offers a
few personal stories about the Sisters. These are stories of women today from
diverse backgrounds and nationalities who have heard God's call and responded.
- How does a person become a religious?
- Formation Program:
Every community has a formation program to gradually integrate new members.
The process happens slowly and with a lot of guidance. Usually the
interested woman comes to know the community better by spending time with
them, praying with them, working with them.
- Early Formation:
Eventually the woman becomes a "postulant" or a "candidate". She does
not take vows at this stage, but she is more closely associated with the
community. The length of time for this stage varies.
- Novitiate: After
discernment with the community the woman becomes a "novice", the stage at
which she studies the history and the charism of the community, the history
of religious life, life under vows, etc. This period lasts for one or
two years. During this stage of formation the woman is helped to:
- - clarify motivation
- - forma solid basis for commitment
- - experience community and mission
- - become familiar with the charism in prayer and
- Profession of Vows: After
the Novitiate the woman professes the vows of the poverty, chastity, and
obedience in the community. She publicly expresses her choice to place
Jesus at the center of her life.
- What are some resources?
- Vision Magazine: annual
publication of the
National Religious Vocation Conference
5420 South Cornell Avenue #105
Chicago, IL 60615
firstname.lastname@example.org or www.nrvc.net
- To request copies:
Or call 1-800-942-2811.
- Content: short biography of
several religious communities; articles about individual religious or about
specific aspects of religious life; lists of how to contact various communities.
- Your Choice Handbook:
published twice a year by
National Religious Vocation Conference
1603 S. Michigan Avenue #400
Chicago, IL 60616
- To request copies contact:
701 Main Street
Evanston, IL 60202
- Content: tear-our
postcards to send to various religious communities to find out more about them;
short descriptions of communities.
- Who are the contact persons in the Diocese of Raleigh?