What is a Vocation?

The word vocation comes from the Latin word vocare, meaning to call. God calls each human person into existence as a unique and unrepeatable creation. In His love, He desires to enter into communion with each person and for this end He gives each of us a specific vocation. By our free response to this vocation, we become the saint God wants us to become. As Pope John Paul II wrote,
God has a project for each one of us, He ‘calls’ everyone. What is important is knowing how to recognize this call, how to accept it and how to be faithful to it. God awaits the response of each person. He does not impose it, He proposes it as an initiate of love, to which one must reply by free choice, prompted by love.
Whether we are called to be a monk or nun, a priest or sister, lay or religious, married or single, we all share the same universal call to holiness as a response to the love of God. The vocation to the religious life is a call to follow Christ more closely by consecration to Him through vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience. Why does a nun leave all to follow Christ? Only because of Love, who has given Himself for her, and invites her to give herself in return.

The Call to Marbury

Every religious house, even those that form part of a larger Order or Congregation, has its own unique personality and culture. The best way to get to know this spirit is just that—to get to know the community by writing and visiting. Our rural Alabama environment provides an atmosphere of serenity and order. Our goal here has always been to provide an example of simple Christian love and devotion, to offer Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament and the recitation of the Rosary, and to pray in a special way for priests and for the conversion of the world. The Blessed Sacrament abiding with us is like the hub of a wheel with spokes reaching out across the South to touch the hearts of those who do not know Him fully yet. Because He is here, we have come. Because we are here, He remains.

What are we looking for in Candidates?

  • Single, Catholic women between the ages of 18-29.
  • High School education at least. College or work experience welcome but not required.
  • Good physical and psychological health.
  • Love of the Blessed Sacrament and devotion to Our Lady.
  • Deep desire to have a more intimate relationship with Jesus.
  • Willingness to learn and a spirit of generosity.
  • Fidelity to the teachings of the Church, and regular participation in her sacramental life (Holy Mass and Confession). Converts must have been Catholic for at least 3 years before entrance.
  • Good sense of humor.
Young women have come to our community from all over the United States—New Orleans, Chicago, New York, Nashville, Detroit and Cincinnati. Some were fresh out of high school, others came from college, yet others from various careers. All came when God called, leaving everything to follow Him, and blossoming and growing in His love. One sister noted that she had no skills adapted to cloistered life. She was not known for her embroidery, translating, or illuminating manuscripts (she was working for a degree in library science with a deep interest in speech therapy). All of these, she assumed, were traditional occupations for nuns. From her first day in the enclosure she found many tasks she could perform for the service of the community—and she has hardly had an idle moment in fifty years.

If you feel that you are being called to dedicate yourself to the contemplative life, we encourage you to contact us and arrange for a visit. Anyone suspecting that God may be calling her, will find a sure help in Our Blessed Mother. She will guide the search with exquisite delicacy and the greatest possible certainty. Eventually one arrives at the point where she must leap with Faith into the arms of God. Fear not—He always catches you! Contact the Vocation Directress at the address below, or use our Vocation Contact Form: Vocation Directress Dominican Monastery of St. Jude P.O. Box 170 143 County Road 20 East Marbury, Alabama 36051 vocations@stjudemonastery.org