Saint Dominic’s Monastery — Dominican Nuns

Cloistered Contemplative Nuns of the Order of Preachers

“My beloved speaks and says to me, Arise,
my love, my fair one, and come away.”
—Song of Songs 2:10

Vocations & Formation

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The years of religious formation are a time of probation in which the young woman comes to know more intimately her call from God and her Dominican vocation.

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It is a process intended to lead each Sister to a deeper relationship with Christ.

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She gradually learns to hear the Word of God in reading, study and prayer, and proclaims that Word in the life of worship.

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She learns to enter into the life of the community, for common life is the testing ground for the nun’s attachment to God and her growth in virtue.

Stages in Formation

There are several stages in the formation program in our monastery.

Aspirancy

a six week period lived within the monastic enclosure, in which the young woman shares in the life of the nuns in order to discern the authenticity of her vocation before entering as a postulant.

Postulancy

a year during which the postulant learns the basics of Dominican contemplative life and the customs of the community.

Novitiate

a two-year period which begins with the reception of the Dominican habit and white veil. It is a time of deepening one’s understanding of religious consecration and in preparation for profession of the evangelical counsels of poverty, chastity and obedience.

Temporary Profession

a period of at least four years which begins with one’s first profession and the reception of the black veil. It is a time of maturing in the contemplative life, of deeper integration into the community, and growth in her sense of responsibility for its life.

Solemn Profession

the culmination of formation in which the nun surrenders herself to God without reserve and is totally consecrated to Him in the Dominican Order until death. She receives a gold ring as a symbol of her total consecration to God.

Suggested Readings

Dominican Life

For young women discerning a call to the Dominican contemplative life:

Contemplative Life

If you are between the ages of 20 and 35 and think you might have a vocation to Dominican monastic life, please contact us through our website, by phone or by mail for further information.

St. Dominic’s Monastery
2636 Monastery Road
Linden, VA 22642
(540) 635-3259