I recently came across a few questions someone was posing online for others to answer. I thought it might be good to try to respond to them here. (While I am not an expert, I would like to remind people that I would welcome the opportunity to try to answer any of your own questions about our life.)
The questions posed included:
Since sisters either live in or near the church, how do they get the money for food, water, insurance, bills, and other stuff, since they don’t have jobs?
Do sisters have free time to do other stuff they want, or is their life exclusively focused on the church?
How much time for sleep do sisters get?
Are sisters allowed to use technology? I go to a high school focused on computer and arts education, and it’d be tough living without computers to put apart and put back together.
Do sisters ever get to visit family? Half my family I’ve never met, but for the family I do have, like my mom, dad, older half-brother, and younger brother, I’d hate to never see them again.
My response would be:
Sisters do not necessarily live near the church (and not in it). We often receive a salary from our workplace, which goes to our community. The community then provides money to cover our living expenses.
Everybody needs some free time, but we do tend to work fairly long hours. In our community, the amount of sleep we get is up to the individual. Some communities are more strict and have a more set horarium (daily schedule).
Sisters are allowed to use technology, but we need to keep a watch that it does not suck too much of our time and energy. I actually use a computer a lot for my work.
Yes, a sister’s families can visit (in my community) and we do visit them. Cloistered communities and some others may have more restrictions on this. Actually, my parents recently stopped by on their way home from a school reunion and joined us for lunch and a visit.
Sr. Christina M. Neumann