NunStuff Palate Clearer – UPDATED

The abundance of news stories (both covered and not-covered) and Pope Benedict’s trip to Malta, have gotten me all distracted. I mean to post something later that picks up where we left off on the Pope’s impromptu sermon of last week, but in order to clear the head let us visit with some of our nun-pals and see what they’re up to!

[Cue news ticker] …beep-beep-beep-beep-beep… (am I dating myself with that reference?)…wait, let me get out my banner, designed by Brian J:

Nun News Network International

Let’s start with the Passionist Nuns of Whitesville, Kentucky, who have beautiful grounds and a lovely-looking retreat facility that I long to visit -if only I did not so hate to fly!

They’ve added a page
of musings out of their novitiate, which I think is very good. Also, their postulant, Ane Kirstine was profiled on the front page of the Lexington Herald-Leader, where she answered questions about what it is like -just a few months into the monastic life- to put the world and its trappings behind one, to live in community.

Also, the Canada Geese in Kentucky are not to be intruded upon!

The Sister Adorers of the Royal Heart of Jesus are expanding
into America’s heartland, and you can watch a slide show of one single, paint-spattered sister, Sr. Marie, restoring a St. Louis convent -all by herself- as she waits for local vocations to come to to their very traditional order.

PCPA’s: The monastery being built by the Poor Clares of Perpetual Adoration, in Arizona, is makin starting to really take shape. Meanwhile, the Ohio nuns have completed their move to North Carolina, where they take up temporary residence at an unused convent and hope to build their own monastery, soon.

Franciscan Third Order, Regular sisters are also building, and getting excited as the end is in sight.

The Franciscan Sisters of the Eucharist have redesigned their website and it’s a big improvement. One of their members, Sister Damien Marie Savino, FSE, Ph.D., will be featured on EWTN’s Life on the Rock, tomorrow night, along with others from the University of St. Thomas.

Sisters of St. Francis, in Peoria have also updated their website, and have welcomed two new postulants. Nice to see an order embracing “later” vocations. I imagine that the older you get, the more difficult it is to take up community life, but there are rarely any age-prohibitions on men who feel called to the priesthood or religious life in middle age (or later) and it seems wise -particularly in light of the noisiness of the times- that some female religious communities also keep some options open for women who feel called later in life.

Speaking of “later” vocations,
the Visitation Nuns have always accepted postulants at any age, and of various physical ability. These two videos take a look at the Visitation Nuns of Tyringham, MA, as the order celebrates 400 years since its founding.

The French-speaking Sisters of the Lamb, is an order which allows women with Down Syndrome to try their vocations as religious.

Carmelite Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, in Los Angeles have three new postulants/

Benedictines of Mary, who are also building, have two new postulants to add to their quickly-growing ranks

The Benedictine Nuns of Clyde, MO, have two new novices, one of whom is profiled here. This particular house has come up with a recipe for a low-gluten communion wafer, which is useful for those with celiac disease

Byzantine Carmelites! How interesting and beautiful!

Sisters of Bethlehem have a blog. They are sort of like Carthusian monks, they have little -hardly known about- places around the world and they pray all day and all night. More info on them here.

From Fr. Steve, some One-on-One with the Saints videos.

The Passionist Novice, Sr. Rose Marie extends an invitation


A 92 year old woman fulfills her dream and enters a convent.

About Elizabeth Scalia
  • Bobby

    from Fulton J Sheen’s Peace of Soul:
    Why are there monasteries and convents? Why do many young souls leave the lights and glamour of the world for the shades and shadows of the Cross where saints are made? The modern world so little understands their mission that, as soon as a newspaperman lhears of a handsome young woman entering a cloister, he telephones the parents to ask, “Was she disappointed in love?” The answer, of course, is, “Yes, with the love of the world. Shea has fallen in love with God.” These hidden dynamos of prayer, the cloistered men and women, are doing more for our country than all its politicians, its labor leaders, its army and navy put together; they are atoning for the sins of us all. They are averting the just wrath of God, repairing the broken fences of those who sin and pray not, rebel and atone not. As ten just men would have saved Sodom and Gomorrah, so ten just saints can save a nation now. But so long as a citizenry is more impressed by what its cabinet does than by its chosen souls who are doing penance, the rebirth of the nation has not yet begun. The cloistered are the purest of patriots. They have not become less interested in the world since leaving it; indeed, they have become more interested in the world than ever before. But they are not concerned with whether it will buy and sell more; they care-and desparately care-whether it will be more virtuous and love God more.

  • Peggy Bowes

    Hate to leave a comment after the gem above, but I wanted to add that I HAVE visited the Passionist Nuns in Kentucky. My parents grew up in nearby Owesboro, and we have kept in contact with the Passionist Nuns as long as I can remember. I believe my mother even sent them an invitation to my wedding. I was always struck by the serenity of the nuns and their beautiful grounds.

    Anchoress, for heaven’s sake, rent a convertible and drive to Kentucky! You can be there in two days. Take the route through West Virginia. It’s a beautiful drive, and the travel stops in WV have Starbucks!

  • cathyf

    Hey, Peggy, are you a relative? My grandmother went to Mount St. Joseph. Her ancestors settled along Panther Creek in the 1830′s. Blandford, Mattingly, Clark, O’Nan, Bivens, Crabtree, Hayden, Burch, are some of my ancestors.

  • Manny L.

    Your survey of religious sites is always fascinating and leaves me inspired. Thanks. I’m tempted to go to that retreat in Kentucky myself. Looks beautiful and peaceful.

  • shana

    YAY for the Visitation Sisters! One of those ‘late vocations’ is my former spiritual directress, Sr Judith Marguerite!

    Beautiful grounds they have, and such a peaceful order. No wonder she felt drawn there.

  • AMDG

    Great post/links. I am struck by the expressions of genuine joy on the faces of the nuns in all of the pictures and they, of course, deserve their joy. They have also chosen it and that I think is lost on people who don’t understand vocations.

  • Tempus_Fugit

    The photo of that nun at the bottom is amazing. She looks absolutely pure, serene and joyful.

  • Sal

    Tempus is absolutely right. These are all lovely. Those of us not called to a religious vocation rejoice with our sisters who are.

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  • anniebird

    I too was struck by the photo of the nin at the bottom – what incredible beauty there is in that serene and prayerful face!

    [Check out the second update; Sr. Rose Marie just glows -admin

  •; Monsignor Michael

    It is just so refreshing to read this…I know the Passionists nuns in Whitesville. They are wonderful. I’ve met Ane Kristine too. Who says the Church is dead !? And, Elizabeth, do take a plane and go to Kentucky. It’s worth it. Everytime I come back to the missions after being there I feel replenished. May the Passion of Jesus be always in our Hearts

  • Nmissi

    Oh, do come to Kentucky. We are so blessed, this is a beautiful place to live. I’ve lived in other places, but I always come home to Kentucky.

    Come up and see us sometime- I’ll cook ! I might even break out the good china!