Joining a religious order women

Joining a religious order

As with everything else you are learning about here, every order is a little different in what is involved in actually entering the community. There are some general criteria and steps, but again, the best thing to do is to speak with the Vocation Director of the order directly.

General Qualifications for Religious Life

  • Catholic
  • Not married
  • Normally between the ages of 18 and 35; some orders prefer the entrant be 21, others will accept older women on a case-by-case basis.
  • High school graduate (minimum, some orders require at least some college)
  • Good physical and psychological health
  • Capacity for community life
  • Desire to give herself totally to Christ
  • Most orders have requirements that the applicant be debt-free

Applying to enter religious life

The order’s Vocation Director will normally work with each candidate or aspirant on an individual basis to determine whether that order is a good fit, and if she should begin the application process.

There is normally application paperwork, essays, academic transcripts, references, a medical history and often a psychological evaluation.