Discerning a Vocation? Getting Negative Remarks?
St. Francis de Sales has some courageous, insightful wisdom and advice for you!
He says “We Must Disregard the Criticism’s of this world’s children!
Sister (guest): Are you getting positive responses to your choice- if you are sharing that choice with people?
Apr 14 2013, 7:24 PM
C: I have been sharing–I still get some raised eyebrows, though it’s been a while since I’ve horrified people by choosing a house that is not in full traditional habit
Sister (guest): That’s interesting- so the swing has swung pretty fully in the traditional direction in your circle
C: Yes, though I do know people of both “persuasions”. The Traditionalists are horrified by no habits
Sister (guest): I just saw a Josephite mag and their young vocations seem ok with no habit- it surprised me, quite frankly
Sister (guest): The Call overides everything else
C: Yes, since the Dominican sisters were boosted by being on Oprah, people have been citing that as an example of how only orders in habits are growing
Sister (guest): And weren’t they on a game show
C: But you’re right–The Call is supreme. Actually, yes, they’re blowing everyone out of the water on a Bible Trivia show
C: I don’t know, it’s as if people think you have to wear special clothing or you’re not really called. It does no good to explain the origins of the habits of the orders I know
Sister (guest): More vocations for them! Are you able comfortably to answer the strong Traditionalists
C: like nursing orders all wearing the standard nursing outfit of their day
I try to say what I know about the purpose of the habit itself, state what I am comfortable with, and then I leave them alone about it
Sister (guest): When I was entering some friends objected to my choice
C: Really? why?
Sister (guest): The cloister primarily
Sister(guest): I was very available and then became very unavailable
C: oh yes, I get the don’t throw your life away in the cloister alot
C: I have one friend who I think wants to hide in my suitcase and go with me
Sister (guest): A hidden vocation?
Sister (guest): You know, our choice really affects people more than one could imagine.
Sister (guest): Changes their whole lives too
C: I’m not entirely sure–but definitely an unrecognized contemplative
C: I never really thought about it, but yes it does.
Sister(guest): Especially if they’re close.
C: yes, all my very closest were reassured when I said they were expected to come and visit
Sister (guest): Will you be allowed to visit without supervision? in the parlor
C: Yes, I believe so. I know there will be parlor visiting, and perhaps invitations to meals with all the Sisters in the refectory. No one has mentioned whether parlor visits will be supervised, and I haven’t thought to ask
Sister (guest): An updated group probably allows you some freedom in that area
Apr 14 2013, 7:45 PM
C: Yes, and this is the group that’s “experimenting” with the modern interpretation of Carmelite life
Sister(guest): To be a Carmelite- what a gift!
C: I think I am going to work very very hard, and be very very lucky & bless
Sister (guest): There is a mystery about Carmel I think, plus the great Saints
C: For me, oh, how to even explain? I feel so loved and cared for there.
Sister (guest): That is true community!
Sister (guest): It’s amazing what obedience does
C: You could be right. Yes, obedience is not slavery, but an acknowledgement that someone else sees what’s best for you better than you do
Sister (guest): There’s a freedom because you are being supported, encouraged in whatever you’re doing. Obedience is a boost rather than slavery
Sister (guest): Theres’ an inherent restfulness for the spirit in obedience
C: And if something isn’t right, or turns out to be the wrong direction, then you have wise people to help you regroup
C: Yes, because I don’t rely only on myself with my limited vision,
Sister (guest): As long as pride doesn’t get in the way- which it can and does at times
Sister (guest): All the greats are constantly talking about humility
C: Oh yes, pride is the many tentacled monster that creeps in everywhere, especially when you’re not looking
Sister (guest): I have a long way to go but keep trying!