Friday, July 20, 2007

Are you a young female looking for and active, traditional Catholic order?

I've been saying for the past year that I believe I may actually live long enough to see recognizable nuns back in parishes and running schools.

I know there are many females out there who want a traditional and orthodox religious life experience, but in many cases this often means a cloister. For those who are attracted to the old Mass looking for contemplative life in communion with Rome, I am aware of the Sister Adorers of the Sacred Heart of Jesus Christ Sovereign Priest and, a new community - the Benedictines of Mary. The Mary, Mother of the Eucharist Dominicans and their sister order, the Dominicans of St. Cecelia in Nashville are probably among the few exceptions of more traditional orders because they are semi-contemplative, traditional and orthodox (meaning semi-active). The latter are not, to my knowledge, celebrating the old Mass, but that may change with the motu proprio, Summorum Pontificum. Other orders may include the Franciscan Sisters of the Renewal who are tied to the very orthodox Fr. Benedict Groeschel and work among the poorest of the poor. What is lacking here, are ordinary parish nuns - habited!

We need active nuns back into parishes the way they use to be. I'd go so far as to say I wish some diocese would pilot it in a few parishes, filling those positions with nuns from the more traditional, semi-contemplative orders. More young girls will respond if this becomes an option because not all are called to the contemplative life or to working with the poor. Furthermore, we all need sisters back in parishes to invigorate parish life and to be role models to young women who may not hear that call without such examples in their lives. I pray that other bloggers will begin to discuss this to highlight the need.

Here is more proof and this time, it comes from the FSSP - the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter, known for their celebration of the old Latin Mass acknowledging that young women are indeed interested in serving at FSSP parishes. This is quite fascinating and I am grateful they are responding to what I believe is a grace of the Holy Spirit. It is just a training course at this point but I fully expect to see it mushroom and then for the concept to spill over into Novus Ordo communities that are more traditional and orthodox.

Unfortunately, the training is not here in the US, but in France. However, anyone from any country may go, but they stipulate what is required for that to happen below.

Here is the scoop from an icon link at the FSSP homepage:
CommuniquƩ: Vocational Training Program for young ladies

For several years the Priestly Fraternity of Saint Peter has received requests from young ladies asking whether we could help them answer a possible calling to an apostolic (non contemplative) consecrated life. These young ladies wish to devote themselves to God in the active service of the neighbour in a parochial setting, or possibly in our missions. We propose to them a Vocational Training Program within the following framework :

1) Duration: from October 2007 until June 2008 included, in Perpignan (Southern France) under the responsibility of Fr. William Vojtek, FSSP. Applications to be sent (see address below) until September 14, 2007.

2) Program: Initiation with the spiritual life and the community life; secondarily: pedagogics, liturgical chant and parochial services (for example teaching children, visiting the persons in need, contributing to sacristy tasks).

3) Trainers: The trainees will be under the pastoral responsibility of priests from the Priestly Fraternity of Saint Peter (an international community of pontifical right, of Extraordinary Roman rite). Director of the training course: Fr. William Vojtek, FSSP: with a rich experience of many years in the formation of applicants to consecrated apostolic life, also in regular contacts with numerous religious female communities. Fr. Jean-Eric Diehr, FSSP, a medical doctor, will bring additional training on some psychological aspects of the pastoral service. Visiting speakers, in particular some apostolic religious nuns, are envisaged.

4) Costs: The expenses of lodging, teaching and subsistence will be covered by the FSSP, but transport charges, health insurance and personal expenditure will have to be covered by the trainees or their families.

5) Engagements: no formal promises or vows of any kind and no religious habit during these 9 months.

6) Criteria: French-speaking young ladies (from any country), at least 18 years of age, baptized Catholics, in good physical and psychological health.

7) Next step: If it pleases God, the training course will lead to a formation with the consecrated life (in a noviciate linked with the FSSP), but it does not guarantee it. It is expected that such further formation might be provided in North America. However, the training course is conceived in itself as an enriching experience, offering to young ladies a 9-month initiation to the spiritual and community life, including teaching and charity work, during one school year. The training course will have achieved an estimable goal while bringing the benefit of a spiritual maturation and a deepening of the Christian virtues in the service of neighbours, through the Roman traditions of the Church.

Signed: General House FSSP

Postal address: Stage vocationnel 2007-2008, Maison Saint Pierre Canisius, Chemin du Schoenberg 8, CH-1700, Fribourg, SWITZERLAND

E-mail address: In contact page, please select "Vocations secretary"