The August Vocation Round-Up

Little Sisters of the Poor, First Vows, July 2010

It’s that time of year again,
when postulants receive the habit, novices take their first vows and some finally arrive at the long-hoped-for day of final profession. Above we see Sisters Amy Marie, Dara Catherine, Judith, and Maria Catherine four newly-professed Little Sisters of the Poor, just after making their first profession. Five new novices were also welcomed to the community in Queens, New York. Their photo album is here. And The Brooklyn Tablet has a great piece on them, too.

A quick glossary:
Aspirant: One who is formally discerning a vocation with a specific religious community.
Postulant: From the Latin postulare, meaning “to ask”; aspirant has asked to be admitted into the community to try his vocation
Novice: Postulant acquires the habit (if one is worn) and possibly a new name-in-religion, and takes first steps within the community during this period of intense study and formation. Novice may leave (or be asked to leave) at any point as discernment continues.
Temporary Professed (aka “Junior” or “first-vowed): Community and novice have discerned that this person and this community seem to be right for each other. Temporary vows are made, sometimes renewable at specific periods. Formation and discernment continue. Separation from the community is still possible.
Final Profession/Full Profession: The community member makes vows “for all of my life,” to serve God within the community.

The Consuming Fire: 21 postulants become Dominican Novices. The gals at Moniales (who recently clothed another new novice) have the friar-novices group picture!

The Norbertines: a slideshow of their ordinations. The sisters are growing like gangbusters

Dominican Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Eucharist: keep scrolling down for slideshows of first profession, final profession and clothings; they have a big group of new postulants due soon.

Sisters of St. Francis of Perpetual Adoration: new novices, first profession and final profession. Postulants entering soon.

Carmelite Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus of Los Angeles: first professions and novitiate entrances

Maronite Servants of Christ the Light, the first (and newly forming) U.S. association in the Maronite Rite as two new postulants

Franciscan Sisters, T.O.R: like so many sisters, they’re moving into newly-built digs and professing and clothing. Scroll down.

Benedictine Nuns: scroll down for novitiate news

Carmelite Sisters of the Divine Heart of Jesus: novices and first vows

Lockport Dominicans: two new postulants

Poor Clares of Perpetual Adoration (St. Joseph’s Monastery), recently moved from Ohio to North Caroline have an aspirant and a postulant

Poor Clares of Perpetual Adoration (Our Lady of the Angels Monastery) has begun a blog. Scroll down to see their four new novices and one newly professed.

Missionary Benedictines: newly professed

Panhandle Franciscans: First Vows

Dominican Sisters of the Immaculate Conception: Two new novices

Missionary Sisters of St. Benedict: new novice pics

8 Jesuits: making first vows (pdf)

School Sisters of Christ the King: Photo Gallery includes professions, receptions

Poor Clare’s Santa Barbara, CA; new novice

Poor Clares, Belleville, IL: new novice

Benedictines of St. Walburga Abbey: A first profession

Poor Clares of Perpetual Adoration (Our Lady of Solitude Monastery) posts pics of their new novice, and check out their new stained glass windows!

Sisters of Life: ten first professions (!) and one final, plus six new novices. See below:

6 New Novices, Sisters of Life

Dominican Nuns, Menlo Park;
Solemn Profession, new novice and new novice and soon a postulant

Rock Island Benedictines: a 37 Year Discernment

Sinsinawa Dominicans: first and final professions

Trappist Nuns, Massachusetts: first profession

Salesian Sisters: keep scrolling

Sister Servants of the Eternal Word: Two new novices, and two first professions

Apostles of the Sacred Heart of Jesus:
new novices, scroll down.

Sisters of St. Francis of the Martyr St. George: August 15th is their big day, with vows and clothings.

Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Church: Four new novices

Nashville Dominicans; always the last to put their stuff up, so keep watching. I think they have nearly 30 postulants expected in September.

I feel like I’m forgetting many, but I’m sure they’ll let me know about it if I am! Don’t forget to check out the word of the day!

About Elizabeth Scalia
  • jh


    Call me me paranoid but sometimes I thinks there is concerted effort among come Catholic factions not to get news like this out

  • Kevin

    Some religious communities use the word “candidate” instead of “postulant.”

    This can be confusing, though, because “candidate” has multiple other meanings. For example, a “candidate for full union” is used among those who work with the RCIA to refer to a person who was baptized into another Christian community and is preparing for reception as a member of the Catholic Church, and a man on his way to diaconal ordination undergoes a ritual in which he become a candidate for Holy Orders.

  • K.S. James

    Thank you, thank you, thank you. God is still calling, and our prayers for vocations are still being answered! Yea God!

  • Roz Smith

    Our prayers are being answered. A wonderful story to start the week.

  • Clement Shea

    I have noticed that the above description of a Novice that they are quick to say that the novice can be dismissed at any time. You notice they don’t go any further but should say that any reason can be used to get the Novice out. Age , personal dislike by the Abbot, Abbiss, Mother Superior, Father Superior. The Novice is never called in in order to discuss the problem if there is one, nor is he given an appeal. He or She is just out because the superiors set themselves up as judge and jury as to who has a vocation and who does not. And you wonder why there are so few vocations!

    [In fact, I DO NOT wonder why there are "so few" vocations. I'm too busy celebrating the fact that there are so many. As to the other, which you portray as a negative: A community may--justly or not--decide that a novice is not for them. It has always been true. Makes sense to me. A community that exists before a novice enters has the right to decide who "fits" and who does not. If they are silly or insular about it, they'll eventually throw themselves into a decline; meanwhile, what novice would want to stay where he/she is not wanted? Supposedly, all involved are in the process of discerning God's will for them, and that alone is what should matter. A novice cannot say, "God wants me in your community, so you must take me," any more than a community may say "God wants you with us, so you have no choice." I have known a number of religious who were certain that they were "supposed" to join one community (or live one particular charism) only to discover--sometimes sooner, sometimes later--that they had correctly discerned a religious vocation, but not the community. Prayer and openness brought them to their "true" community or charism, and no part of the journey is wasted, since it is all part of formation. As with almost everything, how we receive things is entirely up to us, and has everything to do with what happens next. -admin]

  • darcee

    A friend’s daughter recently entered the Nashville Dominicans. Such an exciting time.

  • Niall

    Some good news! We don’t get enough of it, though there is doubtless plenty out there. Yes, God is still calling many to religious life: let’s be thankful for those who have the courage to say “yes” & pray for those who are still unsure of God’s will for them. They are a source of great joy and a sign of immense hope. Thanks be to God.

  • Ellen

    I recently met a monk who was SURE he was meant to be a Marianist. Then he visited the Benedictines. He made his final vows Sunday.

    In our diocese, we have 19 men studying for the priesthood. I am thrilled!

  • Emily

    I had the tremendous blessing of attending the final profession of Sister Mary Grace of the Blessed Sacrament at the Passionist Nuns here in Pittsburgh, PA yesterday. It was beautiful. They aren’t widely known, even here in the city, unfortunately. They could use some good PR!! They just recently put up a website (they don’t have internet in the monastery).


    [Thanks. I love the Passionists and often link to the community in Whitesville. The internet is a huge boon to monasticism! -admin]

  • Jeanne

    Thank you for these posts…I really enjoy reading them am thankful for your efforts.

  • Sr. Lisa O’Connell OSB

    The Olivetan Benedictine Sisters had four junior Sisters renew vows and received a new postulant on August 15.

    [I hope you'll have new pics of the latest, thanks! -admin]

  • Mooga

    Ellen: People take odd fancies, especially when their lives are stalled. Early in 2009, I managed to convince myself I was called to one of the mendicant orders. (I kept changing my mind which.) After some tepid responses from vocational directors, I wised up and realized that I was the furthest thing in the world from a team player, and had no business living in community. So, yeah, I can’t begrudge any superior who gets rid of a buzzkill novice.

  • Frank La Rocca

    I was called back to the Catholic Church in large part thanks to the prayers being said for me (and unknown to me) by the Sisters at Our Lady of the Mississippi Abbey (Cistercians) in Dubuque, Iowa. I thank God for all the Religious sisters who sustain the Church in prayer. They also make the best caramel candies on Earth.

    [Oh, yes, those chocolate covered caramels are occasions of sin! -admin]

  • Pat

    Thank you so much for the wonderful news about these beautiful women dedicating their lives to our Lord! It is more appreciated than you know! Today I will pray the rosary for all religious sisters, and tomorrow for all those discerning a vocation.

  • JuliB

    I’d like to remind everyone that these communities might appreciate a donation once in awhile to help with costs. While I don’t support anyone on a regular basis, I do throw a couple of bucks to some.

  • Marie

    The Nashville Dominicans had nine women make their final professions this July, and they had 27 young women enter as new postulants (their biggest class ever). I don’t have the numbers of new novices or first vows, sorry.

    Also, the Sister Servants of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus (a group of Franciscan sisters in Cresson, PA) have a new novice: Sister Faustina. Their newsletters can be found by clicking on ‘charism’ and ‘newsletter’ on this site:

  • Sally Thomas

    Darcee — A young woman from our parish, the daughter of good friends, is also in the new postulant class with the Nashville Dominicans! This is a good reminder to pray for them all today.

    And we love those Poor Clares who’ve just arrived in Charlotte, NC. While they’re waiting to be enclosed again, they’ve been visiting parishes around the diocese, and my six-year-old daughter is in love with them.

  • Brian C

    Our good friend Sister Theotokos inspires women of FAITH. link

  • Gayle Miller

    Lizzy – you had to remind me about those caramels! They are sublime. Last year I ordered 18 boxes, the year before 12! Do you sense a pattern here? I think I’ll order 36 boxes this year and give them to all and sundry as Christmas gifts. My sister, God love her, manages to make her single box last all year long! Maybe I’ll give her 2 boxes to lighten her load and widen her fundament!

  • Greg

    Are there any future Jesuits?

    [Scan down. 8 of them made first vows -admin]

  • Martin Daly

    Some good news form the Adrian Dominican Sisters — vow renewals and a new novice. I am sure you would want to share this news with your readers — the links are below.