Convent Camino

Religious communities are working a two-day vocation tour, the novely named “Convent Camino” on Friday, Dec. 14, and Saturday, Dec. 15. Over 24 hours, interested women will explore how religious sisters live, pray and serve in St. Louis. The convent camino includes stops at the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet, the School Sisters of Notre Dame among others. And many area sisters will participate.

The sisters appropriated the term from “Camino de Campostello” and adopted the social-networking and traveling aspects, and the journey of discovery and discernment. Interested women explore multiple communities instead of just one on an individual order’s come-and-see weekend.

With an event like this, you’ll get a bigger group, which is nice for the discerners. They can go around with other women kind of thinking like they’re thinking and build some relationships and support networks as well.

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My Deepest Truth

There is a quote that is making its round on the internet these days:

Vocation means fulfilling the original self-hood given me at birth by God
Thomas Merton

So true! Vocation can seem to be a new path and a grand adventure. Yet at the same time, it is a matter of discovering my own deepest truth, it is discovering a new and delightful aspect of what God has made me to be. And this never grows old. It is sometime that I can marvel at today, after decades in religious life, just like I could marvel at it in the heady wonder when I first sensed the call. Again today, I whisper: “Amen!”


Forever Vowed, Forever Wowed

I recently read in America magazine an article titled, “Dear Millennials: Run, Don’t Walk, to Your Vocation,” by Catherine Hadro. ( It is written not just to the Millennials, but to Gen X, Gen Y, i-Gen – all of us.

I am not a Millennial, but I empathize with this current generation. Like Hadro’s description of them, My vocational discernment also was riddled with “what ifs” – and lots of questions and unknowns. I was paralyzed by the fear of making a wrong decision and finding my life and good humor sucked out of me. After all, my single life was allowing me lots of self-fulfillment and world-expanding opportunities at work and with friends. I could not imagine what poverty, chastity and obedience could add.

But God does not give up easily. Faithful to prayer and my discernment, I finally realized, with the author, that “prudence is not holding back – it is discerning how best to move forward.”

Eventually, I did. In baby steps, as formation requires. Now, one year after professing perpetual vows as a Sister of St. Joseph, I find myself “living the dream” I could never imagine. Being “forever vowed,” I am finding, means being “forever wowed.” Being “forever vowed,” I have found, means forever free. It’s a freedom that enables me to not only know myself, but to share myself as genuinely as I am able, with my community, my family, my friends, with those whom I serve. It’s not a perfect freedom, but an ever-evolving one. That’s life – lived to the full.

Yes, I have not only entered, but embraced The Congregation of the Great Love of God. And I belong.

–Mary Flick, CSJ

The Consensus Statement

a treasured summary statement of the Charism of the Sisters of St. Joseph.

Stimulated by the Holy Spirit of Love and receptive to those inspirations

The Sister of Saint Joseph moves always towards
profound love of God
love of neighbor without distinction
from whom she does not separate herself
for whom, in the following of Christ
she works in order to achieve unity
of neighbor with neighbor
and neighbor with God
directly in this apostolate
indirectly through works of charity
in humility – the spirit of the Incarnate Word
(Philippians 2:5-8)

In sincere charity (cordiale charité)
– the manner of Saint Joseph whose name she bears

In an Ignatian-Salesian climate: that is, with an
orientation towards excellence
(Le dépassement, le plus)
tempered by gentleness (douceur), peace, joy.

Songs for Prayer and Discernment

Recently, on our Giving Voice Facebook page someone asked for friends to share songs from any genre that speak to God, discernment, and vocations.  (For those of you who aren’t familiar, Giving Voice is an organization within which sisters under the age of 50 come together for networking, prayer, support, action, and fun.)  I thought I’d share some current favorites of my own and some songs from the list for your own prayer and listening pleasure.

  • God Help Me, Plumb
  • How Sweet It Is, James Taylor
  • You’re the Inspiration, Chicago
  • Closer to Fine, Indigo Girls
  • Braver Still, JJ Heller
  • Abide, Carrie Newcomer and Parker J. Palmer
  • Dwell Among Us, Salt of the Sound
  • It’s Going to Be Alright; Sara Groves
  • Home, Philip Phillips
  • Find Love, Clem Snide
  • Top of the World, the Carpenters
  • The Call, Regina Spektor
  • Joyful, Joyful, Sister Act 2
  • Lift My Life Up, Unspoken
  • Crash and Burn, Savage Garden
  • Help Me Find It, Sidewalk Prophets
  • Caught in Love, Belle and Sebastian
  • You Get What You Give, New Radicals
  • Good Riddance, Green Day
  • Girls Just Wanna Have Fun, Cyndi Lauper
  • One Foot, Building 429
  • Shake It Off, Taylor Swift
  • This Is Home, Switchfoot
  • A Place in the Sun, Stevie Wonder
  • I Bet My Life, Imagine Dragons
  • We Are Here, Alicia Keys
  • Don’t Stop Believing, Journey
  • Beautiful Things, Gungor
  • Ordinary Miracle, Sarah McLaughlin
  • All of Me, John Legend

With what songs are you praying these days?  Leave them in our comments.