and sister interchangeably, technically a nun belongs to a contemplative order, lives in a monastery,and devotes the majority of hertime to prayer for the good of theworld.
A sister who is not a nunbelongs to an apostolic religiouscommunity, that is, a communitythat is involved in active ministry,such as education, justice, healthcare, parish work, advocacy, andsocial service.
A man or woman requesting and
still discerning membership in a
religious community before becom-
ing a novice. The period of postu-
lancy usually lasts six months to
The religious rite in which a personformally enters a religious community by taking vows. Professionfollows a formation program of discernment, education, and spiritualdevelopment.
A process of periodic meetingswith a spiritual director who offers advice and encouragement fordeepening and strengthening one’s
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relationship with God and discerning God’s call.
As members of religious communities, priests, sisters, andbrothers take vows of poverty,celibacy, and obedience. Manycommunities add a fourth or fifthvow related to their charism. Inmost religious communities newmembers take “temporary vows”for a specified length of time—andthey may renew those temporaryvows. The final, binding step is toprofess “perpetual vows” or “finalvows.” =
RELATED ARTICLE: VocationNetwork.org,“What is charism?”
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