Discerning the Monastic Vocation

How do I know if I am called to monastic life?

Discernment is a process of listening deeply for the will of God to be revealed in one’s life. Prayer is an essential component of the discernment process. This includes asking for God’s guidance but also listening quietly for God’s response to our questions, desires, and concerns. Gathering information about oneself and about various monastic communities is another essential element for discerning a vocation. It is beneficial to dialogue with others who know you very well—family, friends, coworkers, and/or a spiritual director—and to involve them in the listening process. Getting involved or staying involved in parish and diocesan programs helps one to get a feel for what ministry and service is like. Visiting communities whose way of life seems attractive is a significant component of the discernment process. Getting a feel for a community’s dynamics, interests, and way of life is best done by spending time with its members through prayer, retreat, and volunteer opportunities.

Are there resources that help with discerning a vocation?

There are many resources available for vocation discernment. Some of these include:







If you wish to learn more about the monastic vocation as it is expressed in our Benedictine community, we welcome you to contact Sr. Magdalena at (256) 615-6114 or vocations [at] shmon.org.



Life here has lured me into listening for the voice of Jesus, the very Heart of Love, within our daily liturgies, in life shared with my Benedictine Sisters, our families, friends and the guests who come to our retreat center.

Sr. Kathleen Christa