To be a Sister of St Joseph of Cluny one needs to be always available, ready to respond to every indication of the Divine Will and capable of living the community and apostolic life of the Congregations and its Constitution.
The call of God is the beginning of every vocation: “The Congregation needs truly religious souls, full of courage, of energy, of good will and of dedication. Let them have the spirit of the Lord, knowing how to forget themselves in order to be concerned about the interest of God only. In a word, let them be souls of sacrifice.” (Life of Anne-Marie Javouhey Volume II…)
Stages of Formation
Pre-Preliminary Formation: (Four months to one year) During the Pre-Candidacy phase of formation, a woman expressing an interest in exploring a religious vocation journeys with a specific sister as her 'contact person' and is invited to visit, pray with and minister with sisters in a local community setting.
Preliminary: (Four months to one year) this phase of formation provides the candidate with an initial experience of apostolic religious life through:
- community living
- opportunities to broaden her experience of the province as a whole
- on-going opportunities for human and spiritual development
- opportunities to explore her knowledge and understanding of basic Catholic beliefs
- involvement in the sacramental and liturgical life of the Church
- experience of a culture other than her own
Novitiate: (Two years) the first year of Novitiate enables the Novice to experience:
- the separation necessary to understand the commitment to leave all to follow Jesus
- a time for reflection and personal prayer to grow in her ability to discern the Will of God
- living in community to enable her to integrate gradually into the mission of the Congregation
- living the demands and joys of obedience, chastity, and poverty
- increased self-knowledge
- a deepening of biblical, theological and ecclesial studies
- greater knowledge of the Congregation’s history and international character
The second year of the Novitiate continues to be a time of discernment. Through increased ministry opportunities, this year introduces the novice to the conditions necessary to balance a life of contemplative apostolic ministry.
Temporary Profession: (Three to Nine years) Temporary vows of Obedience, Poverty and Chastity are made at the end of the Novitiate. These vows are for three years and are renewable for a period not longer than nine years. With temporary profession, candidates are considered a full member of the congregation. They live their lives according to the constitutions of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Cluny, in community and participating fully in the apostolic life of the congregation.
Perpetual Profession and Ongoing Formation: Perpetual profession is the gift of self to God, the Church and the Congregation for life. Formation continues throughout our lives.