Vocation Retreats

Are you attracted by what you see here? Would you like to “come and see”? The normal way to make a vocation retreat at our monastery is to contact us, share a bit about yourself and your discernment, and ask if it would be possible to come and make a discernment visit. An initial visit is usually for one to three days.

Occasionally we arrange official “Come and See” Days or Vocation Retreats; these will be listed below. We also welcome Nun Runs — if you have a group and are interested in dropping by for a few hours, contact us.  (We are sorry we cannot provide overnight accommodations for nun runs.)

Past Vocation Retreats

You may also sign up to be notified of future retreats.

Vocation Retreat: June 3-5, 2016

Could this be your vocation?

This weekend retreat enables young women interested in religious life and specifically in our community to learn more about the contemplative Dominican vocation.

  • Are you a single, practicing Catholic young woman between the ages of 16 (or a current sophomore in high school–“going on 16”) and 27?
  • Are you considering a religious vocation?  (Are you drawn to a life dedicated totally to God and the salvation of souls?  Are you asking yourself, “Could God want me to be a nun?”)
  • When you see the information on our website, do you think, “I’d really like to learn more about this community”?

To request to attend, contact the Vocation Directress and share a brief introduction about yourself and why you would like to attend our Vocation Retreat.

An Introduction to Dominican Contemplative Life

Our vocation takes several years to enter into fully—at least six years of formation, in fact—and is deep enough to endure for a lifetime.  During the retreat weekend, we try to provide an initial taste of the most important elements of our life:

Dominican friar retreat master enrolls some retreatants in the Angelic Warfare Confraternity
  • Monastic: Stay outside the cloister in the monastery guest house, and experience reading at meals and some other monastic practices.
  • Contemplative: Enjoy time for silent prayer, reflection, and Eucharistic Adoration.
  • Liturgical: Participate in the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, offered in Latin and English, and join in chanting the Divine Office (Liturgy of the Hours) in Latin and English.
  • Marian: Take a “Half-Hour of Guard” in our daily vigil of Eucharistic Adoration and Perpetual Rosary.
  • Study of Sacred Truth: Hear conferences by a Dominican friar and the Dominican nuns on the religious life, discerning one’s vocation, and the Dominican monastic life.
  • Community: Enjoy recreation with the other retreatants, and an evening of Vocation Stories with the nuns.
  • At the Heart of the Holy Preaching: Catch a glimpse of what it means for the nuns to offer God their life of prayer for the salvation of souls, at the heart of the mystery of Christ, at the heart of the local and universal Church, and at the heart of the apostolic preaching of the Dominican Order, witnessed to especially at this retreat by the presence of one of our Dominican friars.

(Work is also an important part of our life–doing necessary dishes is a small taste of that over the weekend!)  The retreat also includes an opportunity for sacramental Confession, and a chance to be enrolled in the Angelic Warfare Confraternity (dedicated to chastity according to one’s state in life).


If possible, please contact the Vocation Directress before May 22. If you learn of our Retreat after May 22nd, please contact us anyway, but the sooner the better so we can plan and have everything ready. Thank you!

Place and Time:

The Dominican Monastery of St. Jude is located at 143 County Road 20 East, Marbury, Alabama [click for map], easily accessible from I-65 approximately an hour south of Birmingham and 30 minutes north of Montgomery.

The Vocation Retreat will run from 4:30 pm on Friday, June 3, through 11:00 am on Sunday, June 5, 2016 (Central Time).


By air: We can arrange transportation from Montgomery or Birmingham airport.  Please contact us about arrival/departure times.

By car: If you are interested in carpooling, please contact us to see if there is anyone else coming from your area. We already have one carpool offer.


There is no charge for attending the Vocation Retreat, although we would be grateful for a donation to help cover costs.

A Note to Parents:

Dominican nuns speak to young women in the parlor

Thank you for supporting your daughter in her interest in religious life!  It is a great help for young women to have parents who encourage them to seek God’s will for their lives, whether that means marriage or the consecrated life.

We would be happy to hear from your daughter herself if she is interested in attending our retreat.  We would love to meet you as well if you come to drop her off.  Parents are also invited to attend 8:00 am Mass on Sunday, but we are not able to offer accommodations to parents of retreatants over the weekend.

How You Can Help:

Spread the word! We would like as many young women as possible to hear about our retreat. E-mail your friends, link to this page on Facebook or other online community, print out the flyer and post in your campus ministry or parish. Pray for young women to receive the grace to respond to Our Lord’s invitation. May God reward you for any help you can give.

Don’t forget to visit our other Vocation pages:

Interested in a future Vocation Retreat?

Please check all that apply:

(Since we do not have a Vocation Retreat scheduled for 2017, if you are interested in our community at this time we encourage you to contact the Vocation Directress to learn more or arrange a discernment visit.)