Friday, May 9, 2008

Steps to becoming a Benedictine Sister Part Two: Affiliation

The affiliation step is the very beginning of the journey.  When a woman is interested in religious life, she looks at many different communities to see where she is called.  All communities are different and a person is drawn to one community versus another for many different reasons.  It may be their prayer, community life, or mission that draws a person to a particular place.  Whatever the case may be, women today carefully discern their call to religious life and the community.  At Our Lady of Grace Monastery, we accept single Catholic women between the ages of 22-45 who have no previous marriages or children, who desire to serve the people of God in Community founded upon prayer, work and hospitality.  The affiliation stage can last from six months to two years.  It begins by a woman expressing her desire to the Prioress and Vocation Director to get to know the community better by attending prayer, meals and visiting the community on a frequent basis.  It is also a period of time where the candidate meets with the Vocation Director and keeps in contact with her as they discern her call together.  Once the affiliate believes she is ready to take the next step she must meet with the Prioress and then formally write a letter seeking permission to enter the community as a postulant.  Upon the acceptance of the request by the Prioress, the affiliate is ready to take the next step.  

On June 19, 2008, Heather, pictured above, will become an affiliate of Our Lady of Grace Monastery.  Please pray for Heather as well as for other happy, holy, healthy women who are discerning their call to religious life.

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