How to telll employer You are becoming a nun?


Hypothetically in a secular work place how would one tell their boss they are becoming a nun (sister) seems obious how much notice would you give? Generally how would you do it.


I think the general rule is two weeks. If asked about the reason you are leaving, just say that you will be working for your church. I suppose that there will be some that want a better answer than that, so I can’t say much else. It will depend on who’s asking and how comfortable you are with telling them the entire story.


Yes, two weeks is generally considered courteous. For most jobs, however, you don’t *have *to offer any notice or explanation for why you are leaving. It’s just professional and respectful to offer feedback.

If I felt secure in my job and that I had a good relationship with my boss, I would probably give more notice than the two weeks, especially if I had a position that might be hard to fill or require a great deal of training for a new person. I might even offer to train a new hire before departing. If I felt, however, that telling my boss would mean that I would be let go, I might sit on it until closer to my quit date, but probably not less than two weeks away.

As far as reasoning, again I’d go by the relationship. If you know your boss is anti-religion or anti-you, you could be as vague as “I will be in a new position that is better suited toward meeting my long-term goals” and that would be truthful while not opening yourself up to lots of criticism. If you’re friendly, you could say “Well, I’m going to study to become a nun/religious sister.”

From an employee standpoint and a purely social standpoint, you get to control how much you say or don’t say.


I was in the same boat, but I let them know that I was discerning religious life, and talked about the retreats I was going on. I got involved in church work there locally. My fellow employees were supportive, and thought it something of a novelty and honor (the staff was Anglican, UMC, and Baptist Christian with one other Catholic Christian).

When the time did come for me to resign as a result of my new husband finding a job in another state, HR told me I had to send the letter to the head of my division, which was the ‘big boss’ downstairs. This was two weeks before our estimated departure time. For whatever reason, he went into some kind of shock, as did my staff after he told my direct boss. Hubby and I were off at lunch when this happened. One staff member who was on travel status said upon her return, “I hear you really unsettled the troops.”

That being said, check the policy of your employer. Two weeks is what I’ve always heard.



Pretty the same way you would tell them that you are leaving for any other reason, like returning to higher education full time or retiring.


I will be leaving the company in September to . . . . . . . My last day will be September 15, 2015. I have very much enjoyed my time at and the many friendships that I have formed here. It has been an honor and privilege to work with all of you. I hope to continue my many friendships and I wish everyone here well on their journey through life.

God Bless


And I would add "to: pursue a personal goal.

If you think they’ll give you grief, you are under no obligation to say why. If they offer you more money to stay, simply, say it’s not anything personal, and it’s not about money, but thank you so much.


Or just say you’re going to discern for religious life. What’s to hide? It’s a beautiful choice.


I don’t think she’s trying to hide it. I think she doesn’t want to be ridiculed.
Neither would I. I don’t think it’s their business to know.
She’s leaving their employ. She’s going to give notice.
That’s about it.


This may be a bit different, because I didn’t have a career. I was a waitress and trainer at a local restaurant. When all the arrangements had been made for my entering the monastery, I simply gave my boss two weeks’ notice.

I told everyone why I was leaving – fellow employees, college professors, and friends. No one ridiculed me (to my face anyway), but a few people tried to offer “advice” which ranged from absurd to obscene. None of it bothered me though. God had called me to monastic life, and His grace was sufficient to the challenges of the times. It always is, of course.



In my case I wasn’t so much leaving a job as trying not to accept one. I had just returned from overseas (in order to apply to become a seminarian for my diocese) and several people wanted to know what I would be doing and a few even offered me work. Once I was accepted to the seminary, I told them - I’m going to start training to be a priest - since I figured that there was no point in hiding it and if I didn’t tell them then when would I. INterestingly, everyone was really supportive with one of my colleagues (who is not at all religious) even describing it as a calling! The same is also true now, several years later; when people ask me what I do, I tell them. Nobody has ever ridiculed me - I get some interesting responses (mostly along the lines of “what made you want to do that”) but if anything, people are actually really supportive as well as curious.


It depends on the job. Some positions might be difficult to fulfill so the employer might require at least a month’s notice. Furthermore vocations are very tricky. Make sure you don’t burn the fence when leaving because sometimes these types of vocations do not always turn out so it is always a good idea to leave on good terms so that in the event, one realizes religious life isn’t for them, they can always have an option in returning.

Sometimes it might be possible to take an extended leave of absence without pay to explore this vocation as well. I personally suggest this option should the vocation not work out.

The general rule is always- don’t burn the fence because one never knows if they will want to return or if they will require a good reference at some point.



If one is entering religious life, he/she should go with all his/her heart! We should not run to Christ while “looking back” all the time. Someone who feels the need to take an extended leave of absence, “just in case,” isn’t ready to enter religious life.

I do agree that we should not burn bridges (fences) as you say, but not because we’re trying to be clever with God – “just in case this doesn’t work out, I want you to know I can take care of my own future, thanks” – but because Our Lord tells us to act with charity.


You should know that those entering a religious order to further discern whether or not they are called to religious life are encouraged by the vocations director for the order they’re entering to take a sabbatical or leave of absence from their employer in the event it is discerned the person is not called to religious life or that particular community.


I agree with professionally giving notice but not with the notion that its not their business. Id, and plan on doing this once my finances are straight :slight_smile: , tell them i was planning on becoming a religious sister to persue my true calling. Id even mention the order happily and with the upmost joy. You are a witness to God and living the life He wants you to. Jesus and all His disciples were ridiculed. He said the world would hate you because it hated me first and whoever denied Him He would deny before the Father. Do not be ashamed but at the same time be humble and respectful to the employers views. It can be an excellent opportunity for evangelization just by giving witness.

Of course based on the wording of your question i answered with the presumption that this would be something youve done after much discernment in your spiritual life before feeling absolutely sure that this was your calling before formal discernment with an order.


That certainly wasn’t the case when I entered the monastery.

I got rid of nearly everything I owned and followed Christ. Never once was it suggested to me that I keep a safety net just in case, nor that my entering the monastery was just for further discernment.

Of course, it would have been six more years of discernment before solemn vows. And of course, I did leave after only two years of discernment. And I had no regrets whatsoever that I didn’t have a safety net waiting for me.

I was 800 miles from home – determined NOT to return to there – and only knew two women in the town where the monastery was located. One of them took me into her home for a few weeks until I could line up housing and employment. And by God’s grace I did just fine.

“Jesus said to him: No man putting his hand to the plow, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God” (Luke 9:62). I took that verse very seriously and am glad. Having no safety net helped me live the life fully and be more certain when I discerned I was not called to a lifetime in the monastery.

I cannot speak for any other communities and their practices. But the one I entered absolutely did not advocate for holding on to a back-up plan, just in case.



It is a hypothetical bc I’m in the process of discernment and I’m not sure where to begin I’ve been in touch with the Daughters of saint Paul, Daughter’s of Nazareth, and Sister’s of life. I love the charism of life and the charism of technology as well. Please pray for my discernment


t is a hypothetical bc I’m in the process of discernment and I’m not sure where to begin. I’ve been in touch with the Daughters of saint Paul, Daughter’s of Nazareth, and Sister’s of life. I love the charism of life and the charism of technology as well. Please pray for my discernment.


Absolutely! This can be a beautiful time in your life. God bless you!



It’s hypothetical bc I’m diserning. I’ve talked to Daughters of at.Pau,l daughters of Mary of Nazareth and sisters of Life. I haven’t had time to do a retreat and want to so badly. God will provide.please pray for me.


I’m in the process of discernment, so I’m looking at various orders. I’m at a crossroads BC my job as a teacher prevents me from having time for daily Mass and visiting orders please pray for me.

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