Steps to Becoming a Sister


If you believe God is drawing you to take a closer look at religious life, contact us by phone, email or letter. A vocation director will offer you materials for prayer and reflection and visit with you about any questions you have. She may also invite you to “come and see” how we live.

Affiliation (1-3 years)

Being an affiliate gives you the opportunity to meet more sisters and become better acquainted with SSND life. A contact community in your local area will support you through prayer and companionship. The vocation director will companion you and provide opportunities for visits and prayer with sisters, participation in community gatherings, and live-in and ministry experiences.

Postulancy (1-2 years)

As a postulant you will continue to grow personally and spiritually while living with SSND in community. You discern God’s call and the compatibility of your gifts with our life by sharing prayer, household tasks, some ministry experiences, and day-to-day community living.

Novitiate (2 years)

During the novitiate you seek to deepen your relationship with Christ which will be the heart of your religious life. Through solitude, prayer, study, life in community, and some ministry experience, you will get to know more fully the various aspects of SSND life, including the vows of poverty, celibacy and obedience.

Temporary Profession (vows can be renewed up to 9 years)

You will profess vows according to the SSND way of life, entering fully into our life and mission. Readiness for your permanent commitment is indicated by the integration of prayer, community and ministry; ongoing mutual discernment; your commitment to SSND mission and charism in our world today.

Perpetual Profession and Ongoing Personal Development in Community (forever)

After completing the time of temporary vows, you will profess vows forever in community. This is a public, permanent commitment. The vows of consecrated celibacy, gospel poverty and apostolic obedience express the fullness of our commitment to God and to the members of our SSND International Congregation.