What do you expect of a Nun


So I remember my grandfather telling me story, during the 1960s when he was an orphan at an orphanage named “Hospicio de San Jose” and nuns there were very strict and demanded respect, they would punish children physically when things finally got out of hand, but most of the time he said the nuns would just say “Madre de Dios!”.

He said that even though the nuns would slap them it taught them respect to the elderly and to everyone around them, he also said yes they weren’t his mother but a few of those nuns treated all of them (orphans) as their very own child. He was also an altar boy at the time. The nuns were also one of his finest teacher in Spanish, catechism, English, history and mathematics. He admits that he wasn’t a good boy as he once asked a nun “Sister, are you bald?” He was punished and had to clean the entire sanctuary of the chapel including the sacristy. He also said that the nuns were one of the most professional nurses he met as whenever they got sick that nuns would nurse them back to full health and when the nuns couldn’t nurse them the nuns would quickly run to the car bringing them to the nearest hospital

As of now he is still a bit uneasy seeing nuns wearing a short habit as he said he misses the old days seeing nuns singing Latin hymns and nursing them. But he must say that even though nuns don’t wear what they used to wear it bring nostalgia whenever he sees a nun in a church or a hospital or even anywhere.

He as everyone where I live expects a nun to be loving, caring, charitable and respectable. And I too was very surprised when I saw an old nun rush to get a first aid kit even though she was of old age she run super fast and helped a nun that accidentally fell down that church stairs and started to bleed. I asked that how she did that and she said “I’ve worked at a hospital all my life specifically at the ER, so even though I am old and frail doesn’t mean I can’t do my duty to God and our brothers and sisters.”

So if I may ask you what would you expect a nun would be? It’s sad that their numbers are unstable some years are great with a lot of novices taking final vows while other no novices actually are trained.


They are sinners on the road to Sainthood just like we all should be. They are the brides of Christ. I pray for all of them.


That her behaviour is in full accord with the Rule of her Order; or Congregation (if a Sister).


It’s hard to answer your question about “what would you expect a nun would be” because there are so many orders of nuns and sisters, with so many different charisms and missions to do in the world. A Carmelite is not going to be doing the same work as an Ursuline Sister.

I just expect a nun to do her best to practice faith, hope and charity and to love and serve the Lord the best she can.

I also like it when they are happy in their vocation. I have encountered many religious who seem happy and content, but also some who really didn’t seem to like what they were doing and I think perhaps they needed different work, a different order, or not to be in the religious life. But they may have been just struggling with a difficulty at that time and I didn’t know all the facts.

One of the sisters I knew in school and did not like and who I felt was not a happy person as she was divisive and sometimes mocking or nasty to her students, just recently passed away. She had been in the religious life for 70 years! So perhaps there was more to her than what I was seeing. I think maybe she wasn’t happy with her job as a teacher and would have liked to do something else, or maybe her strident personality just wasn’t right for teaching teenage girls.

As for the fact that nuns used to use corporal punishment at times, so did parents and lay teachers. I attended a secular public school for kindergarten and the principal had a paddle with which he would spank or threaten spank kids who were bad. I personally saw him take this paddle out and use it to threaten some older kids who were bullying me. As the kid who was being bullied, I was grateful he did that and the bullies left me alone after that. It was a different world. A principal wouldn’t be allowed to do that today.


[quote=“Maxwell03, post:1, topic:533663, full:true”]."

So if I may ask you what would you expect a nun would be?

A good Christian .


A “nun”, by definition, is a cloistered religious. Someone who is educating, caring for or some such is not a nun, but is a sister even though we are inclined to generically use the term “nun”. Some religious congregations of sisters never had a habit to begin with. Others chose, when allowed to do so, more practical attire for their apostolate. Some nursing orders and congregations wore… nursing uniforms.

Cloistered religious will always wear a habit distinctive to their order. Most people never see them because they are, well, cloistered!


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