Our Vocation Retreat last weekend went very well. Seven high school and college age young women traveled from Louisiana, North and South Carolina, and Ohio to attend—one even drove all the way from Wisconsin! Each sought to answer two questions: What is the vocation of a cloistered Dominican nun? Is it God’s will for me?
We spoke to the young women about the desire for God which draws us here, and about the perfect love—in union with Christ for the salvation of souls—to which our vocation tends. By attending the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass and chanting the Divine Office in Latin and English along with us, the retreatants experienced how the Liturgy is “the heart of our life and the chief source of its unity”; by sharing in Eucharistic Adoration and the Rosary Hours of Guard, they participated in our vigil of intercessory prayer.
Silence–the Best Part
One of the best parts of the retreat, the girls told us during recreation on Sunday, was the challenge to keep prayerful silence all day on Saturday. “It was great to have the time and quiet to ponder what we have been hearing and experiencing, just to let everything sink in,” said one young retreatant. “I liked what you said about ‘fruitful silence,’” said another. “During the Office, I was trying to ‘plant’ every word in my heart.” When we shared our vocation stories, the girls also saw for themselves the joy and happiness that comes from a complete gift of oneself to God.
With the Preaching of the Dominican Friars
Fr. Ambrose Little, O.P., gave the retreatants helpful conferences on vocation discernment, St. Dominic, and the relationship of spiritual support between the Dominican nuns and the friars. On Saturday, he sang Mass in Latin in honor of the Blessed Virgin, speaking in his homily about how to be a Dominican is to live under Mary’s mantle.
After Mass on Sunday, Father enrolled the young women in the Angelic Warfare Confraternity, a confraternity run by the Dominican Order and dedicated to the pursuit of purity and chastity under the patronage of St. Thomas and the Blessed Virgin. The girls responded enthusiastically, with all six unenrolled retreatants deciding to be enrolled (one girls was already a member). We are happy to share this great help to virtue with our retreatants and friends.
Over the course of the weekend, the retreatants received an answer to their first question, “What is the vocation of a cloistered Dominican nun?” What about the second, “Is it God’s will for me?” Please keep these young women in your prayers, that this retreat will bear much fruit in their lives as they respond to God’s grace and continue to seek His will. We entrust them to Our Lady!
Did you miss this summer’s Vocation Retreat?
Check out our Vocation Retreat Page for information about individual visits; let us know if you would be interested in a group retreat in the future. You can also visit our Vocation Page for more information about vocations to our community.