Formation

There are several formation stages in this community: 
Aspirancy
A young woman who has commended herself by means of references and sufficient contact with the community, may be permitted to spend a period of time - from six weeks to three months - living with the community, discerning her vocation to Dominican life. During this time she may expect to live the daily schedule of the house, and to be involved in some work in the community. She will have regular discussions with the Prioress in which she may deepen her understanding of the Religious state and learn something of the Dominican spirit and way of life. There is no commitment to or by the community at this stage. The aspirant is absolutely free to leave the aspirancy at any time, and the community reserves the right to terminate her aspirancy without supplying reasons for doing so.

Postulancy
This initial stage of Religious Formation lasts from six months to one year. Its purpose is to allow for a more formal and prolonged discernment of the young woman's vocation, and to prepare her, according to the Church's instructions, for life in the novitiate. Postulants follow a programme of study in which Church Doctrine, Spiritual Theology, Theology of Religious Life and Liturgy form the basis. It also affords a climate in which the practical experience of consecrated life, self- knowledge and spiritual growth can take place. The postulant, while not yet a formal member of the community, takes part in the daily schedule of work and prayer. She may leave, or be dismissed at any time.

Novitiate
The Novitiate is the beginning of life in the community, although there is still no commitment through vows. In this community the Novitiate extends over two years. It is a time devoted to spiritual study and prayer - a time of seclusion from social contacts and apostolic activity, enabling the novice to develop that deep knowledge and love of God, of Religious Life and of the Order, which is essential if she is to make Religious Profession. A novice may leave at any time, and the community may terminate her probation at any time.

Temporary Profession
 At the end of the novitiate the novice may apply to make Profession of the Vows of Poverty, Chastity and Obedience. If the community accepts that she has a genuine vocation, she may be admitted to Temporary Vows which she makes first for a period of two years, then for a period of three years, after which she may be permitted to make Perpetual Profession. We apply carefully the Church's laws concerning the rights and duties of Professed Religious.


On-going Religious Formation
We embrace the Church's teaching that Religious Life is a "School of Perfection" and that we are engaged, throughout our lives, in the daily pursuit of personal conversion and union with God. To this end we never cease to study, pray and try to practise the truths of the Christian life, especially as they are embodied in the spirituality of the Dominican Order.