. . . more nuns mean better Catholic schools, which means better parishes, which means ongoing church community.
Listen to the older priests talk about their call to God. The first thing that many talk about is their early Catholic education - being taught by a religious order of nuns.
more Catholics tithing, more Catholics supporting and sending their children means more Catholic schools. More Catholic parents accepting the children God sends them rather than contracepting means more Catholic schools. More faithful Catholic parents encouraging vocations in those children means more nuns–and more priests.
We’re working on it…
I’m curious… how does one even become a nun?
I’ve been playing with the idea the last few weeks but I honestly don’t know what it means to be ‘called’ and I certainly don’t know where I’d start to examine this path. I suppose the obvious answer would be to ask the parish priest, however, he has left. Our parish is in a state of transition. We’ve lost our nun and our priest and I’m left not quite sure who I can bother with these kind of questions… except, I suppose, the internet.
Simply Google up your archdiocese and search for a “Vocations” page or link. There will certainly be someone there to whom you can direct your questions. They can probably post you a packet of information - they would be delighted to, I am guessing.
If you have a great love of God, and a heart of prayer and service, the Church certainly needs you! Will include you in my prayers for vocations.
Please pray that I’ll become one, God-willing!
The order I’m discerning works with spiritual teaching/retreats and catechesis – very important.
I’m male. At one point my mother asked me if I’d considered being a priest: our local priest was a brusque and uncharitable guy, really offputting to many people, and this surely affected my view of the church as well as the priesthood!
I always have thought nuns were involved in doing cooler, more practical things, more powerful things than priests.
Did anyone notice the (probably Episcopalian/Anglican) nuns who were quite prominently front and centre in the footage of Prince William and Kate’s wedding?
Hopefully this will inspire Catholic and non-Catholic Christians alike to not be so dismissive of the idea of the religious life.
That could not be further from the truth. The priest brings the Body and Blood of Christ to the altar. The priest brings the forgiveness of Christ to lost souls in confession. I don’t mean to lessen the importance of the religious life, but nobody who is not ordained can do those things- the most powerful things there are.
How many families today encourage vocations with their children?
How many people extol the virtues of being religious (male or female)?
If you do not have the support for the religious in your home community, it far lessens the chances that YOU will chose such a life.
I agree, we need more nuns! Haha!
Let’s all keep vocations in our prayers.
Just in case…
Remember in the Catholic Church that nuns are generally cloistered and sisters are the majority of religious women that the average person will encounter in the parishes, schools, etc.
All nuns are sisters, but not all sisters are nuns.
Agreed, but we need more parents who are accepting of such vocations. We need to remove the negitave sterotype of a woman remaining a virgin for her entire life and not having a family. Discerning a vocation to the sisterhood is a lot like that story in the Gospels where Mary uses the the expensive perfume to anoint Jesus, but people keep telling her like “Oh you wasted it, it could have been given to the poor”. People tell the young women “Oh be a wife and mother and have a family, you are wasting your life away in religious life” but in fact, they give much pleasure to the Lord! We need to give young ladies like this a lot of love and support and resources. We need to let them know that it is ok and a beautiful thing to be a Bride of Christ! I know personally, there is a ton of resources out there for guys discerning the priesthood, and rightfully so because they are so important because they are needed for the Sacraments, but we must not forget the religious women, who work so hard in the heart of the church!
I see vocations with comtemplative orders like EWTN’s (they have two new off-shoots in Texas and AZ) and the Dominican Sisters of the Eucharist is growing…I think they teach.
The Sisters of Alma have a growing population also, and they have educated nuns that do a variety of things.
I pray for all vocations but “teaching nuns” nuns, that want to teach, not that are forced to teach, would be such a great blessing. So many nuns seemed unhappy and not supported years ago, but now if that is their charism, women who wanted to do both could. The blessings they would bring to so many children!
I don’t know how to say this fully, but I suspect that sisters wanting to teach are likely to be far more effective than the ordinary elementary/HS teacher is. There’s just more to it, for them; their work ties up to a bigger picture for them and for the students.
I do too think that but they have to be educated unless they are teaching just religion. You have to be effective teaching everything and be understanding of differences in learning, etc.
There were many wonderful nuns years ago, but many were not. I have heard on TV (Mother Angelica being one) and from my peers, horror stories, some keeping them away from the church or Catholic school for their children. The very mean nuns who hit often and never smiled. One young man that was dyslexic I think was hung up in the clothes closet by his shirt, another young man (and this was the last 12 years) was put in a trash pail for not listening well. Students were humiliated many times. My good friend years ago talked with such sadness about her experience in Boston and how her father (a feisty Irishman) stuck up for her and took on a sister giving her undeserved grief. Mother Angelica didn’t want to be a nun because of her experiences with them, it was in spite of.
One reason for the problems were large classes, ignorance about children in general and being terribly rigid in teaching methods. Many were unhappy. As one ex-nun said, there weren’t a lot of different orders,teaching, contemplative and nursing. Nuns didn’t leave as freely and whether you took to teaching or not, you stayed.
So many young, energetic and holy nuns are becoming teachers now, but we need many more. Catholic schools can come back then and be more economical and devout. I love the draw to contemplative orders, I just wish teaching orders would resurface also.
From what I’ve heard, the public schools were no better – huge class sizes, public humiliations (including the paddle), bitter teachers, ignorance about children, and all the rest. I think the reason Catholic sisters always bear the brunt of complaints is that people expected these brides of Christ to be sweet and gentle, but they were – in some cases – no different from their secular counterparts.
In general, I think we do a tremendous unkindness to the vast majority of sisters who never engaged in these actions by our continually bringing up and spreading these stories. Did bad things happen? Yes. Were these things limited to Catholic schools? By no means. They were very much par for the course in schools across the country.
Thanks be to God, education has come a long way in this country.
I didn’t mean to disparage any nuns, many did a wonderful job under not so wonderful circumstances, but the jokes, books and true commentaries came from somewhere and they did influence lives and decisions both ways.
I live in the north east and we never had paddling (my mom would never have agreed to that) and I can’t remember any public humiliations either. We did have up to 30 children sometimes but being firm and sending the student that couldn’t listen to the principal and or sometimes another classroom for a break was used on occasion.
I had wonderful nuns for religious classes on Saturdays but that stopped after third grade, there just wasn’t enough of them. I’ll never forgot one sister who who took my St Anne plaque I brought in to show her and showed it to other nuns and made such a fuss. I kept that into adulthood and she became one of my favorite saints to pray too.