What are the Stages in becoming a Sister of JMJ?
There are five stages Pre-Candidacy, Candidacy, Pre-novitiate, Novitiate, Juniorate and Ongoing Formation.
Pre - Candidacy
On feeling drawn to consecrated life, you contact a Vocation Director (see Contacts) and begin a journey of exploration through accompaniment and dialogue. This is a mutual ‘getting to know you’ for both the pre-candidate and Vocations Director during which they explore, whether or not religious life would be life giving and fulfilling for the candidate. This time can last from one to two years.
As a young woman you show a genuine interest in our way of life and you are invited to stay with us for a period of one year to facilitate a better knowledge of yourself in view of discerning your vocation to the Congregation of JMJ. This period also enables you to grow in human and Christian faith and provides you with opportunities for greater familiarity with the Spirit and Charism of the Congregation.
Pre - Noviciate
The Pre-novitiate is a period of reflection and formation of yourself. As a pre-novice, you aspire to learn the essential and primary requirements and become aware of your desire for living a simple life ascertained by the CJMJ and arrive at a sufficiently free decision to enter religious life. It would normally last for 12 months.
The novitiate is the beginning of life in the Congregation and it is a time of intensive formation (Cons.68). The novitiate is a time of interiorization and spiritual deepening. You are gradually initiated to the knowledge, understanding and living of the Charism of the Founder and guided to dedicate yourself to apostolic and charitable works of the Congregation, while developing intimate union with Christ from where all their apostolic activities flow. The duration is two years. This period also covers the one canonical year of noviciate.
The programme of the second year of the novitiate shall be organized in such a way that there would be participation in an apostolic task in one of the communities. (Cons. No. 74)
At the end of the novitiate the novice makes her first vows, which is also known as being admitted to temporary profession. These vows are initially for a period of three years, and may be renewed for one, two or three years. The Period of temporary profession is the second phase of the initial formation and has its special significance and importance for laying a strong foundation for living one's religious life. (Cont. 83, 84). Period of temporary profession lasts for six to nine years.
After the period of temporary profession, a Sister makes known her decision to the Superior General to consecrate her life through perpetual profession. She commits herself for life by taking perpetual vows of Consecrated chastity, Evangelical poverty, Apostolic obedience and becomes a permanent member of the Congregation of Jesus Mary Joseph (CJMJ).
Ongoing formation takes place in our communities. In continuing formation Sisters of CJMJ are engaged in lifelong learning with regular renewal of their lives and updating of skills for their ministries, for deepening prayer and community life.