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TeresaBenedicta

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Just thought I'd share some more profession/clothing news from the SSVMs, all happening on the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception:

9 Novices will receive the habit and religious names
2 Novices will profess First Vows

(The SSVMs become novices about a month or so prior to receiving the habit and their religious names. I'm not sure why.)

On October 24th, 11 Novices (including a good friend of mine) professed first vows.

It's interesting how the clothing/vows work for these sisters. It is, in some ways, very individualized for each sister. Special care is taken to make sure each sister is ready for that next step. So that is why you see a few different ceremonies throughout the year, rather than just one for clothing, one for vows, etc.

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I was actually going to ask about the differnt clothing ceremonies throughout the year. A question on the sisters, do they have a set entrance time? I know the Sisters of Life and the NDs and DSMMEs do as well. I have a friend who was strongly considering the sisters but ended up marrying.

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[quote name='HopefulBride' timestamp='1291062418' post='2189861']
I was actually going to ask about the differnt clothing ceremonies throughout the year. A question on the sisters, do they have a set entrance time? I know the Sisters of Life and the NDs and DSMMEs do as well. I have a friend who was strongly considering the sisters but ended up marrying.
[/quote]

No, they don't really have a set entrance date. They pretty much have rolling entrances, although they do try to have girls enter between "semesters", so they're not coming in during the middle of a string of classes. Which kind of explains why there's the different ceremonies for clothing/vows. They try to cluster as much as they can (for example, a sister might wait an extra month before professing first vows so as to do so with more of her sisters that need to wait one more month for the completion of their canonical year). After first vows, you're part of a particular class that will be your sisters throughout formation.

It's kind of confusing because it's not striclty structured. I mean, there is structure, but it's loose. And it's really directed toward each individual sister and her discernment and the community's discernment.

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i went to a first profession of a SSVM, it is so touching! I could post one picture when i find a time...

@TeresaBenedicta, wow, that's what also I know about their community here.. well of course, they're one community!

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[quote name='TeresaBenedicta' timestamp='1291068702' post='2189877']
No, they don't really have a set entrance date. They pretty much have rolling entrances, although they do try to have girls enter between "semesters", so they're not coming in during the middle of a string of classes. Which kind of explains why there's the different ceremonies for clothing/vows. They try to cluster as much as they can (for example, a sister might wait an extra month before professing first vows so as to do so with more of her sisters that need to wait one more month for the completion of their canonical year). After first vows, you're part of a particular class that will be your sisters throughout formation.

It's kind of confusing because it's not striclty structured. I mean, there is structure, but it's loose. And it's really directed toward each individual sister and her discernment and the community's discernment.
[/quote]

TB, do you know how long their novitiate is? It sounds as if it consists of the one canonical year.

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[quote name='Yaatee' timestamp='1291086422' post='2189951']
TB, do you know how long their novitiate is? It sounds as if it consists of the one canonical year.
[/quote]

Yeah, in general the Novitiate is one canonical year, unless mutual discernment determine that the novice should take longer (which can and does happen occasionally).

The SSVMs, being primarily a missionary order (they also have a contemplative branch) and being a [i]relatively[/i] new order (founded in 1988), have a shorter formation process than other non-missionary orders. There is such a great need for the sisters. Ideally the sisters spend three more years, after first vows, in formation. Sometimes, however, they are often sent on mission after two years of further formation-- so a total of approximately three and a half years of formal formation.

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Wonderful to hear about! Thanks for sharing :) I think that's very good how they individualize things a lot for each Sister, and having rolling entrances and different times for clothings and vows, etc. It sounds a little closer to how a cloistered community works .. and with the 3.5 years of formation. I've never met any of the Sisters but I would love to. I only saw two in person once at St. John Cantius in Chicago. They were talking about their mission in Russia I believe it was .. and they had the all black habits and veils, which fits in better with the Russian culture they explained. I bet they are doing such wonderful work there! :nunpray:

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[quote name='Chiquitunga' timestamp='1291094857' post='2189969']
Wonderful to hear about! Thanks for sharing :) I think that's very good how they individualize things a lot for each Sister, and having rolling entrances and different times for clothings and vows, etc. It sounds a little closer to how a cloistered community works .. and with the 3.5 years of formation. I've never met any of the Sisters but I would love to. I only saw two in person once at St. John Cantius in Chicago. They were talking about their mission in Russia I believe it was .. and they had the all black habits and veils, which fits in better with the Russian culture they explained. I bet they are doing such wonderful work there! :nunpray:
[/quote]

Ah, yes!! They also have sisters in the Eastern church-- Coptic and Byzantine rites, which is awesome. The reason those sisters have different habits has to do with the tradition of religious in the Eastern church. Well, they're actually the same habits, but in black rather than blue and grey.

And these numbers are for the US Province only. The Order is growing all over the world!

I was just talking with my friend who professed first vows last month and she was telling me that, in the USA alone, over [i]50 dioceses[/i] are asking for their presence. Isn't that crazy?! While they are growing quickly (in the US, probably just as quickly as the Nashville/Ann Arbor Dominicans, considering the rolling entrances), they need more vocations.

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[quote name='TeresaBenedicta' timestamp='1291095916' post='2189973']
Ah, yes!! They also have sisters in the Eastern church-- Coptic and Byzantine rites, which is awesome. The reason those sisters have different habits has to do with the tradition of religious in the Eastern church. Well, they're actually the same habits, but in black rather than blue and grey.

And these numbers are for the US Province only. The Order is growing all over the world!

I was just talking with my friend who professed first vows last month and she was telling me that, in the USA alone, over [i]50 dioceses[/i] are asking for their presence. Isn't that crazy?! While they are growing quickly (in the US, probably just as quickly as the Nashville/Ann Arbor Dominicans, considering the rolling entrances), they need more vocations.
[/quote]


I think the rolling entrances is great. I am a firm believer that people are not one-size-fits-all and neither should formation be.

And, IMHO, while a ten-year novitiate would indicate that something is out of whack, it makes sense to me that twelve months is appropriate for some people, fifteen for others, eighteen for others, etc. and it is excellent to have the variation be "normal" rather than have a typically prescribed twelve-month period and then what's the matter with YOU that you aren't making your profession on schedule??? :rules:

So says me.

Not that they should care in the slightest what some random person on the internet thinks about their formation practices, but TB you can tell them that this random person on the internet approves. :like:

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TB,

I have a question about your future community. My friend who was disceerning with them told me that with the contemplative community, one can go back and forth bethween contemplative and contemplative-active. is that true? If a sister wanted to go from Contemplative to contemplative-active she could do so? and vice versa? Can a sister go back and forth? and is it for a certain amount of years.

Sorry about all the questions but I just find this fact about them to be fascinating!!

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[quote name='HopefulBride' timestamp='1291236700' post='2190235']
TB,

I have a question about your future community. My friend who was disceerning with them told me that with the contemplative community, one can go back and forth bethween contemplative and contemplative-active. is that true? If a sister wanted to go from Contemplative to contemplative-active she could do so? and vice versa? Can a sister go back and forth? and is it for a certain amount of years.

Sorry about all the questions but I just find this fact about them to be fascinating!!
[/quote]

My understanding is this...

Every sister goes through the same formation. After formation, a sister might discern that she feels called to the contemplative "mission", in which case she could (and most likely would be, unless there were a need for her in the active mission) be sent to the monastery. She would live there for a few years, sort of as a "trial", to see if that indeed is where God wants her. If it is, she'd stay.

But, sometimes, a sister might be a contemplative for years, and then be asked to enter the mission field again. I know this happened for one of the sisters that is in New York. In the middle of the year, one of the sisters in the NY mission had to go home to Argentina to be with a parent who was dying. This sister had a particularly important role at a parish or school (I forget what) and she needed to be replaced immediately. And so one of the sisters in the monastery was called to take the other sister's place.

There are also some cases when a sister has been in the mission for quite a few years, and then feels called to enter the contemplative branch. So she might request to transfer.

I think most of those cases-- entering into the contemplative branch at a later time or coming out after being in for a while-- are pretty rare. Most of the time the contemplative vocation shows itself fairly quickly.

But, like with the formation process, there's a balance between what the sister discerns within the community, and what the community needs are. This is with discerning between the contemplative and active branches, and in discerning where a sister goes on mission in general.

That's my understanding of it, anyways.

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[quote name='TeresaBenedicta' timestamp='1291272263' post='2190310']
My understanding is this...

Every sister goes through the same formation. After formation, a sister might discern that she feels called to the contemplative "mission", in which case she could (and most likely would be, unless there were a need for her in the active mission) be sent to the monastery. She would live there for a few years, sort of as a "trial", to see if that indeed is where God wants her. If it is, she'd stay.

But, sometimes, a sister might be a contemplative for years, and then be asked to enter the mission field again. I know this happened for one of the sisters that is in New York. In the middle of the year, one of the sisters in the NY mission had to go home to Argentina to be with a parent who was dying. This sister had a particularly important role at a parish or school (I forget what) and she needed to be replaced immediately. And so one of the sisters in the monastery was called to take the other sister's place.

There are also some cases when a sister has been in the mission for quite a few years, and then feels called to enter the contemplative branch. So she might request to transfer.

I think most of those cases-- entering into the contemplative branch at a later time or coming out after being in for a while-- are pretty rare. Most of the time the contemplative vocation shows itself fairly quickly.

But, like with the formation process, there's a balance between what the sister discerns within the community, and what the community needs are. This is with discerning between the contemplative and active branches, and in discerning where a sister goes on mission in general.

That's my understanding of it, anyways.
[/quote]

I think it's very cool that the one community has an active and contemplative branch.

Thanks for explaining!

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