So you’ve decided you’d like to become a Daughter of St Paul! The early stages of introduction to and preparation for religious life are called ‘Initial Formation’. This includes the stages of Postulancy, Novitiate and Temporary Commitment.

Postulancy is a particular time of discernment and transition which allows the young woman to experience community life and ministry among the Daughters of St Paul. She would be encouraged to deepen her personal relationship with Christ through prayer and study, and to further develop in her human and Christian maturity. There is a focus on personal growth, vocation discernment, experience in ministry, and adult faith education. During Postulancy, the young woman would begin to experience what it means to offer her life to Christ and fully commit herself as a Daughter of St Paul.

Generally, Postulancy lasts for two years, although this may vary. In Australia, we might ask the young woman to spend part of this time with a Postulancy group in another country.

Postulancy is also a time of immediate preparation for the Novitiate.

Novitiate is a two-year program of real initiation into the Pauline religious life. Building on the Postulancy, the young woman, as novice, becomes more greatly aware of the vocation, experiences the Order’s style of life and takes on its spirit. In a particular way, the novice learns about the Order’s history, studies the vows and Sacred Scripture, and is introduced to the Order’s Constitutions. It is an intense time of prayer, study, mission and community life, in which the novice embraces the Pauline charism. The novitiate concludes with the novice being consecrated to the Lord through the vows of poverty, chastity and obedience. The newly professed Sister now begins a journey of several years in temporary profession.

In Australia, a candidate for novitiate might be required to join an international novitiate group in another country.

Temporary Commitment
On professing her first vows, the newly professed Sister makes a commitment to live in vows for a period of one year. These vows are renewed at the end of each one-year period, for a total of five to seven years. This time is known as Temporary Commitment.

The Sister in Temporary Commitment continues her Pauline and academic formation, engages more fully in the mission and deepens her understanding of all aspects of Pauline life-consecration, spirituality and community. At the end of the period of Temporary Commitment, after further discernment and personal preparation, the Sister professes her final vows in perpetual profession.





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