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So, I saw on a thread about different stuff one can bring and can't bring into the convent. If you have been to that point, what were you told you can and can't take? Where was this? I'm really very interested in this and I can't believe I haven't really thought about it before... If there are any other interesting things, please do share! [img]http://www.phatmass.com/phorum/public/style_emoticons/default/clap2.gif[/img]

Pax and God bless!

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Cool question!

I have never formally entered an order, but I did apply to one and was very close to entering before discerning it was not THE order. This order was pretty lenient in what you could/could not bring, within reason, of course! The order that I speak of is the Carmelite Sisters of the Divine Heart of Jesus in Wauwatosa, WI (a suburb of Milwaukee). I was penpals with one of the Sisters there (who actually left last year before her final vows were to take place), and she told me that they allow postulants to bring photos, holy cards, favorite spiritual books, swim suit (the Sisters swim in private), alarm clock, etc. I never received the actual list because they don't send that until you get your formal acceptance, but I was surprised at how much stuff you were allowed to bring compared to the same order in St. Louis. St. Louis is VERY strict in what items you can bring with you. My friend entered there in 2009 (she discerned recently that she was not called there) and she told me what she was allowed to bring. The list was very short and could not be substituted at all [b](this is what I remember, but don't quote me on it because it's been a while since she told me)[/b]:

2 pairs of black stockings
1 pair of regular black shoes
2 or 3 undershirts (can't remember the exact number)
enough underwear and bras for one week and they had to be all white
1 rosary
1 Bible and a copy of "Imitation of Christ"
A few family photos
1 regular watch (no digital)
all of this had to be brought in a trunk which my friend jokingly called her "nun trunk" (it was a black foot locker)

:)

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Oh wow! See, there are other groups, such as the FSP, that have a very different list I bet. Like, Some things are going to be very similar. Let's call those things the "basics." But others, when it comes to books and Holy cards, etc. are going to be very different. And the FSP...idk what kind of electronics they allow you to bring. :hehe:

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[quote name='MargaretTeresa' timestamp='1303161789' post='2229926']
Oh wow! See, there are other groups, such as the FSP, that have a very different list I bet. Like, Some things are going to be very similar. Let's call those things the "basics." But others, when it comes to books and Holy cards, etc. are going to be very different. And the FSP...idk what kind of electronics they allow you to bring. :hehe:
[/quote]

Well, being that the Daughters of St. Paul are very media-oriented, I wouldn't doubt if they allow electronic stuff. ;)

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[quote name='MargaretTeresa' timestamp='1303172670' post='2229972']
Also, I've seen talk of discernment Biographies? What is that? :confused:
[/quote]

I have heard of such things, however I have never gotten instructions on how to write one or what they want. I would also like to know.

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[quote name='MargaretTeresa' timestamp='1303172670' post='2229972']
Also, I've seen talk of discernment Biographies? What is that? :confused:
[/quote]

It's a biography of how your discernment began and what you have done up to this point. Most of the time, you have to write one as part of your application to enter a community. I had to write one when I applied to the Carmelite Sisters of the Divine Heart of Jesus and I also wrote one when I got in touch with the vocation director of the Sister Servants of the Eternal Word. It helps them to know who you are so they can direct you and help you discern. :)

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When I entered the strangest things to not bring were my cell phone and house keys. Obviously, we weren't allowed to bring cell phones, haha, but it still seemed strange after using it as a calculator/alarm clock/ constant companion to all the sudden be cut off from the outside world - it felt strange. For a while I felt like I was forgetting something no matter where I went! House keys were another thing that I didn't think about but felt quite odd not having. When we were postulants we lived at the motherhouse and it was strange to have to ring the doorbell to get into the house you live in. At the same time, it really was a lesson to me that everything I have now comes from the sacrifice of those who were there before me. It isn't mine to have but somehow I still benefit from it - kinda like grace. Anyway, those were the first two things that came to my mind as I thought about what it was like when I entered. Every community is different though.

Sister Marie

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I had a similar experience, Sr. Marie! I was so used to using my cell phone for everything; calendar, alarm clock, storing contact info, etc. So to not have it at first was really strange! It was like I had to relearn how to organize some aspects of life! But then I got to the point where it was kind of nice to not have that connection all the time! I mean, people could still be in contact with me and in my community we still had access to the internet and we could make phone calls by using a calling card. So it wasn't like I was cut completely off. I know it was quite an adjustment for my parents too. They were used to being able to call me any time. It's only when I look back in hind sight that I realize how hard it must have been for them.

As others have said, each community is different. But one thing I have come to be grateful for in religious life is that even if something might be considered "mine", that is to say I'm the one that is primarily using it right now. It really belongs to the congregation and if my assignment is changed then I might not have need of that certain item any more. I'm thinking of things like computers, or certain electronic devices that might be used in a certain field or part of the apostolate.

I hope this makes sense!

Also, I remember from my entrance list that we had a lot of items that were blue: blue skirts, blue sweater... so my friends played a joke on me before I entered and got all kinds of random stuff that was all blue! :clapping: I think they had a lot of fun finding all this random blue stuff!

God bless all of you as you discern the call of the Lord!
peace,
Sr. Andrew

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Sr. Andrew, my friend earlier informed me you are an FSP. Please do tell, what are you allowed to bring in? I've been getting more info about y'all and talked to Sr. Margaret Michael last Friday. I really hope this is where God is calling me. :smile4:

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In the CFRs, we did not bring any electronics. Many of the new candidates would have "phantom phone" where you think you hear your cell phone ringing or think you forgot to turn it off before going in somewhere. That happened a lot. The funniest thing that we brought was a bucket. Other than that, it was pretty standard : a gray sweater, gray socks, sandals, white undies, a nightgown, Catechism, Bible, rosary, sleeping bag, a few family photos, a set of breviaries, and personal care things were provided there. They also gave us a list of things NOT to bring including hair dryers, jewelry, a credit card, etc. I was able to bring musical instruments.

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[quote name='He is Risen!' timestamp='1303752878' post='2232504']
In the CFRs, we did not bring any electronics. Many of the new candidates would have "phantom phone" where you think you hear your cell phone ringing or think you forgot to turn it off before going in somewhere. That happened a lot. The funniest thing that we brought was a bucket. Other than that, it was pretty standard : a gray sweater, gray socks, sandals, white undies, a nightgown, Catechism, Bible, rosary, sleeping bag, a few family photos, a set of breviaries, and personal care things were provided there. They also gave us a list of things NOT to bring including hair dryers, jewelry, a credit card, etc. I was able to bring musical instruments.
[/quote]

Why a bucket?

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[quote name='MargaretTeresa' timestamp='1303758024' post='2232611']
Why a bucket?
[/quote]

Probably because they are a mendicant community and have to use a bucket to bathe. A lot of very traditional Carmelite communities do this. You are only allowed a regular bath or shower once a week and the rest of the time you wash with soap and a bucket of water. :)

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[quote name='MaterMisericordiae' timestamp='1303767755' post='2232853']
Probably because they are a mendicant community and have to use a bucket to bathe. A lot of very traditional Carmelite communities do this. You are only allowed a regular bath or shower once a week and the rest of the time you wash with soap and a bucket of water. :)
[/quote]
We had access to a shower downstairs when I was visiting. :huh:

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[quote name='franciscanheart' timestamp='1303768286' post='2232866']
We had access to a shower downstairs when I was visiting. :huh:
[/quote]

I had access to a shower too when I went on retreat, but the Sisters probably conserve water as best they can. :blush:

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