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I was just wondering... This may seem like an odd question, but... Most orders won't give you the boot due to a minor speech impediment, right.......? (That's probably a really stupid question, but I just want to be sure.)

As others have said it could depend on the community. It will definitely not be something that will keep you out of any religious order. I can think of a couple of sisters I know who have slight speech impediments.

 

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I didn't think it should be too much of a problem... Or at least, I hope not. Usually you can understand me, but because I have difficulty with the "r" sound, everyone thinks I'm from New York/New Jersey. I couldn't really do any public ministry (talking at retreats and such...), but I don't think it would be a huge problem for monastic orders (as far as I can tell, brotehrs/sisters in the monastery don't talk for most of the day!!! Or at least, a few hours...)

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Having been the same too-young-yet age as you, I can agree that Emma' s advice was excellent all the way. Do what you can where you are and with the means at hand.   As for dating, if it looks attractive and you have the chance, do it.  It does make for a more informed decision in the immediate although sometimes it may seem that it is just a complicating factor. You might wake up the next morning, no matter how enjoyable the experience has been, and just know that something is missing that a few moments with Christ will fill.

 

Perhaps long after, when life gets heavy and grey as every one does at times, you will be spared the "What if..." or "Maybe I should have..."  temptations against your vocation.  We had a very wise priest during the novitiate who also worked with seminarians, and referred to those moment as "the Green Grass Syndrome".  In other words, the grass can always look greener on the other side of the fence, especially if you haven't walked through it and stumbled once or twice over the stones and holes that it can hide.

 

You seekers are all in my prayers that you will find the place that God has marked out for you and where your heart belongs.  There could be no greater grace.

 

Blessings.

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I didn't think it should be too much of a problem... Or at least, I hope not. Usually you can understand me, but because I have difficulty with the "r" sound, everyone thinks I'm from New York/New Jersey. I couldn't really do any public ministry (talking at retreats and such...), but I don't think it would be a huge problem for monastic orders (as far as I can tell, brotehrs/sisters in the monastery don't talk for most of the day!!! Or at least, a few hours...)

 

I empathize with you. My greatest enemy is the 'H' sound. Which is of course problematic as a Priest, because preaching about Heaven and Hell is suddenly even more difficult. :P But trust me, if not being able to pronounce R's is your biggest issue in life, your life is pretty sweet. All the other religious in your community will have tons of problems of their own. Having a stutter does make life difficult, but it can be overcome. Have you ever thought about speech therapy? That really helped me out a lot.

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I didn't think it should be too much of a problem... Or at least, I hope not. Usually you can understand me, but because I have difficulty with the "r" sound, everyone thinks I'm from New York/New Jersey. I couldn't really do any public ministry (talking at retreats and such...), but I don't think it would be a huge problem for monastic orders (as far as I can tell, brotehrs/sisters in the monastery don't talk for most of the day!!! Or at least, a few hours...)

 

And don't say you can't do public ministry! I don't care how bad your stutter is, it can be overcome. Just look at King George VI, who had to speak in front of millions of people, even though he stuttered terribly. I used to worry and agonize over my stutter, telling myself I could never be a priest because of it. But do you know what happened? Last summer I had to speak in front of a room of a hundred people, completely unprepared with nothing to read, and I was an absolute natural. I didn't stutter once, even though I did this repeatedly throughout the week, and everyone said I was really good. Keep in mind my stutter used to be so bad that I couldn't put two words together, and there I was, doing public speaking perfectly and in fact enjoying it immensely, something most people who don't have a stutter are afraid to do. So please, don't say you can't do it; it will take work, but the only thing that will make it impossible is if you decide it is.

 

Whenever I used to be apprehensive and agonize over it when I was younger, however, I would read this article about a stuttering priest, and it really inspired me: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/deaconsbench/2011/04/called-to-preach-how-a-priest-overcame-stuttering/

 

I was much like him in that I considered being a Carthusian because of it, but I realized that if I am indeed called to a religious vocation, it is centered towards preaching, speech impediment be damned.

 

If you want, I would love to talk to you about this privately. I struggled with it a lot in my life (And still do when I'm really nervous), and I've had speech lessons, so although it's not the same as actually being there coaching you through it, I could help you.

Edited by FuturePriest387
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I used to not be able to say my r's and l's (which is really unfortunate when your name is full of them), but I did speech therapy in late elementary/middle school and by early/mid highschool you couldn't tell. I'm even starting to be able to roll my r's in Spanish, something I thought I would never be able to do. Once in awhile words like "rural" throw me through a loop, or I trip over a word, but everyone does that sometimes. I was really self-conscious about going to speech therapy though, because I thought I was "too old" for it, and it didn't seem like it was really doing anything, and doing the exercises was really repetitive, boring, and nothing makes you aware of what you can't say like standing in the bathroom going "rr," "rr," "rr," "car," a thousands times for the exercises they have you practice at home. However, at a certain point, something clicked. Overcoming a speech impediment is a lot about a) building tongue strength, and b) overcoming a habit of where you are placing your tongue in your mouth. I had a bit of a "lazy tongue" in that I wasn't bringing it up to the roof of my mouth properly when I was trying to form the sounds. Training yourself to do that when you're not sure where the darn thing is supposed to go is onerous, but can be done.

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