WIll my medical disabilities prevent me from entering a convent?

I feel God has been calling me to a life as a nun or sister for a while, but wanted to ask this before pursuing it any further. I was born with a medical condition that requires me to use medical supplies. I am healthy and live a normal life for the most part. In other words, I really do not have any physical limitations that would prevent me from pursuing my vocation. The only issue I foresee is Medicaid pays for most of my supplies, but there is obviously a limit to how much they will pay for. That being said, I typically spend about 30 dollars every month on extra supplies. I know that I would be required to take a vow of poverty, so would I be able to get the extra supplies I need? Would I still be allowed to receive the benefits of Medicaid (I receive about 1,200 dollars every month for supplies)?

It really depends on the Order. Franciscan Orders tend to be stricter on poverty and may not be able to help.

Have a look into these programs:



If an Order knows you could get on either of these, they may be more accepting. :slight_smile:

Although, if you can continue on medicare, then that would work out great.

Another issue is whether the Order can accept your illness. Have a look at these threads:

The best thing to do is to find Orders you are drawn to, and tell them all about your needs. If they believe you are called, they may work everything out with you.

God bless you.

Are their any orders that do not take the vow of poverty? I always wondered that.

Not too sure, but I think to be a religious per se, one needs public consecration and to vow the evangelical counsels of poverty, chastity and obedience. Although different congregations can define the vow of poverty in different ways.
I do know that some Third Orders make promises of chastity and obedience only.


All orders will take the vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience. However it looks completely different from orders. When a person becomes a nun, she takes Solemn Vows. When someone becomes a Sister, she joins a congregation and takes simple vows. Although they all must stay true to their vows, a Nun would be more bound to poverty than a sister. It also looks very different from order to order. Some orders live a life of complete poverty, while other orders focus on other aspects of religious life. It just depends on the Charism of the order.

With lay orders/Third Orders, the situation is a little different, but they should be taking the same vows. One may ask how it is possible for a married person to follow the vow of chastity, but it would pertain to chastity within the marriage. The person doesn’t have to be poor, but they should do their best to live simply without too much love for worldly things.

As far as the question goes, the absolute best thing is to go and check out a few orders that you are interested and explain to them your situation. There are sisters that are accepted into an order with some medical problems (especially a birth defect or congenital problem). A preexisting medical condition will not exclusively prohibit you from joining an order. If the Lord is calling you to religious life, he will not just leave you out to dry. Your vocation may be difficult to discern because of it, but do not be afraid! To suffer in discernment is beautiful–it allows you to know where the Lord is truly guiding you.

God Bless!

I have had similar concerns since I take medication. For a long time I was scared that I wouldn’t be able to enter religious life at all because of it. I slowly realized that it is all in God’s hands. I completely gave it over to Him knowing that if I am truly called He would make it work out for me. Since then I have discovered there is a cheaper version on the market and I can take a lower dose than I thought. So I know God is taking care of me! In some ways I see it as a “tool” in finding where I belong. So I would say hand it over to God and trust Him also try to look at it in a positive light. This may take some prayer but you will be stronger for it!
Good luck and God Bless.

Impediments can frustrate what I may want re vocation, but I look on them as indications as to where I am not called. Although I do not think that one should give up entirely unless one really feels that is what one needs to do. Seeking sound spiritual advice the very best of moves. Putting all in The Lord’s hands trustfully and with confidence is a sure and safe way to journey (and probably the surest and safest) if at times a dark or unclear way as to the actual destination, even of the road ahead. And we humans by nature do like to know where we are going and how to get there.
The sure sign of vocation is an attraction to that way of life, the ability or qualities necessary to lead that way of life and a “meeting of two wills” or formal acceptance into that life.


Another Order to look into:


I would like to add a related thread investigating Orders open to mental issues and medication:



Please see why here:

Needy Meds IS safe because they just list discounts straight from the drug manufacturers. I even use such one from the estrogel drug company.

State insurance for those with low income or disability helps, too, and in my case, covers all the copay except for hormonal gels/creams.

Please forgive my past ignorance!!!

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