Become a little sister
There is no recipe… just a path along which we journey, with maybe some doubts along the way.
There’s no user’s manual, since each calling is as unique as the human person it is addressed to.
Listening, prayer, deep reflection, allowing others to accompany her…such are the “traveling bags” a woman takes with her once she has freely chosen to walk this way. A path of growth opens up before those who express the desire to share the life and dream of the Little Sisters of Jesus.
Initial formation is a long road, extending over ten or twelve years. It often requires a person to open her heart to universality, to welcoming difference, to leaving her own country and learning a new language. Every dimension of her being is involved so she can become capable of growing in freedom and of witnessing to the intimacy of God’s love.
Postulancy begins with the Taking of the Cross. It lasts between one and two years, and is lived in an “inserted” community so we can experience concretely what it means to share the life of simple, marginalized people. We and the Little Sisters learn to know and trust each other, and we grow in knowledge of ourselves as well.
Noviciate is the time of initiation into Religious Life. We take a certain distance from our family and friends. This period offers us the conditions for a deeper spiritual experience in the footsteps of Jesus of Nazareth. Throughout this time we are provided with the means necessary to grow our spiritual life, know and understand ourselves, and deepen our understanding of the vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience. It’s a special time, in which we discover more of the spirit of the Little Sisters of Jesus, and the paradoxes we will face all through our lives. It’s also the first test place where we learn to dialogue through our differences, and thus get a glimpse of the international dimension which is an integral part of our vocation.
This stage begins when we make First Profession. During this time what we learned during the novitiate meets the test of real life. We have to let the Holy Spirit unify our life, while sharing friendship with our neighbors and coworkers. This time is lived out in an “inserted” community. After a few years, there are two additional moments of formation: the “Common Trunk” and theology studies. These offer us more possibilities of experiencing diversity and universality, as well as the chance to learn to reflect upon our experiences in the light of the mystery of God and the realities of the world.
This time gathers little sisters from various countries who are preparing for final vows. It prepares us for a definitive commitment, and includes periods for living in greater communion with Jesus. During this time we have a chance to learn about the richness of other Churches, and we get to know Islam.
A temporarily professed little sister offers herself definitively to the Love of God during a special Mass. She professes for life the vows of Gospel poverty, consecrated chastity, and loving obedience. During the celebration she receives a ring which is a sign of the eternal fidelity of God.