Discern God’s Call Five paths to religious life

How do you know if God is calling you?

That’s simple. God is calling you. The question is not if. It is “to what?”

All of us have a vocation. For some that vocation, or call from God, is married or single life. For others, it is in religious life that we find our greatest fulfillment and happiness.

As you pray your way through this meditation on five paths toward religious life, listen quietly within your heart for a still, small voice. That voice may be God nudging you to explore the adventure of life as a Catholic sister.

Asking for “a friend"?

Let’s just say you believe a friend of yours would make the perfect candidate for religious life. Why do you think so? Does she walk one or more of these paths? If so, then she (or you!) might want to talk with a vocation minister to explore further. Take a look!

What is a “call”?

More often than not a call from God comes in human form . . . words of encouragement from others can help someone discern where they are being called in life. You may know someone whom you think would be a good candidate for religious life. How do you recognize her? You may meet her on one of these five paths.

The path toward joy and wholeness

She will be a woman with a discerning, passionate, and joyful heart . . . capable of making a permanent commitment . . . single and willing to live a vow of celibacy.

The path toward gratitude and prayer

She recognizes the presence of God in life, in good times and bad, and reflects on God’s activity in her life. She prays regularly, attends Mass and is comfortable sharing her faith with others. She reads, studies, and prays with scripture.

The path toward trust and hospitality

She has relational and interpersonal skills. She enjoys other people, has good self-esteem, is able to trust and be trusted, expresses gratitude openly, is sensitive to the needs of others, and respects their dignity in responding to those needs. She exhibits hospitality, empathy, and compassionate concern.

The path toward friendship and curiosity

Her communication skills are evident. She listens well and is able to express her ideas clearly. She helps others recognize their strengths and gifts and encourages them to use them. She respects and appreciates others’ opinions about life and faith.

The path toward responsibility and creativity

She exhibits personal responsibility. She enjoys doing a full day’s work, is able to spend time alone, knows how to set and keep personal boundaries, shows creativity in thought, word, and action.

If you’ve listened well, you may have met yourself—or a friend—on one of these paths.

What now?

If it is a friend you’ve recognized here, then please share with her your encouragement to consider religious life.

Here are some conversation starters:

Do you know what I admire in you? I notice _________________.

I see how deeply you care about __________.

God uses your gifts when you_________________.

I’ve seen you grow in_________________________.

Your commitment to _____________________ is an inspiration to me.

Then say: I think you would make a great sister. Would you give that some thought? The world needs Catholic sisters now more than ever. You’d be great! I promise to pray for you and support you if you want to choose this path in life.

In the 2,000-year history of the church, no one ever came to a vocation without someone to lead them to Christ.

If you’ve recognized yourself on one of these five paths, the next step is talking with a friend, a trusted spiritual guide, or a vocation minister. Trust the movement of God’s spirit within you and do not be afraid.

If you would like support from us, we are happy to help. Please contact Sister Teresa Marron at 217.787.0481, or srteresa@spdom.org, or visit us at www.springfieldop.org.

Glory be to God, whose power working in us can do infinitely more that we could ask or dream. Glory be to God whose power, deep within our hearts, can take us by the hand and lead us to himself.
(based on Ephesians 3:20)
Created By
Dominican Sisters of Springfield, Illinois


Dominican Sisters of Springfield, Illinois

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