How do you become a nun? An insight into FCJ Formation


I work in a non-church based environment and often when people realise I am a nun they are quite fascinated. One of their first questions is “How do you become a nun?”
Over the next couple of weeks we are going to look at some different aspects of FCJ Formation – how people go about making the decision to become a ‘nun’, what the steps are in joining a community, and what sort of training or formation they go through both before and after their final vows.

First of all you might want to have a bit of an overview. You will notice this is NOT a quick process – it takes a long time!

Initial discernment – usually when a woman begins to consider religious life she is accompanied by an FCJ Sister for a period of about a year. 

Postulancy  – this often involves living with the community for between 6 months and 2 years

Novitiate – a two year period of study, prayer and reflection spent in community 

First Profession – First vows are made for a period of three years.

Renewal of Vows – for between three and six years.

Final Profession – Final vows are made for life – usually somewhere between nine and twelve years after the person first moved into community.

Tertianship – About ten years after final vows, with significant experience of living a vowed life, sisters are invited to another year of formation!

One Response to “How do you become a nun? An insight into FCJ Formation”

  1. clarefcj Says:

    Looking forward to sharing with you on this Lynne!

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