On June 10, 2017 five young Little Sisters of the Poor made their First Religious Profession at Bangalore Novitiate of the Little Sisters of the Poor.
STAGES OF FORMATION
1. INITIAL DISCERNMENT
When a young girl is drawn to the life of a Little Sister of the Poor and desires to try to discern if God wants her to lead this type of life she can approach the Little Sisters and express her desire. She will be encouraged to have contacts with the Little Sisters of the Poor as often as possible in order to experience their life in totality – their prayer life, community life and service to the elderly. After this experience if she wishes to follow her vocation she will be sent to one of our Homes for a few months of further experience.
At the end of the period of experience in one of the Homes the young girl makes her decision whether to continue or not. If she desires to continue her formation so as to become a Little Sister of the Poor, she makes it known to the Provincial who in turn may admit her to enter into the postulancy.
Postulancy is a period of psychological and spiritual transition which prepares the candidates for a responsible choice. Its duration is from six months to one year. This period helps the Congregation to make an initial judgment about the vocation of a postulant; it enables the candidate to see if the vocation of humble service of the Congregation truly responds to God’s call for her.
The period of novitiate lasts for two years. These two years of intense prayer life, reflection, Study of the Sacred Scripture and the history of the Congregation help the novice to develop a deep relationship with our Lord and be penetrated with the charism of our foundress, Saint Jeanne Jugan. Each year during the novitiate she is given the opportunity to spend a few weeks in one of our Homes to have an experience of community life and direct hospitality with the elderly Residents.
At the end of the period of Novitiate the novice makes known her willingness to make her vows of chastity, poverty, obedience and hospitality, in full liberty for two years. After the Profession, the young Little Sister is sent out on mission to one of the Homes of the Congregation where she lives fully the life of a Little Sister of the Poor.
4. TEMPORARY VOWS
During the period of temporary vows the young professed Little Sister undergoes a doctrinal year of Church’s teachings and also further training in care of the aged. At the end of two years, the young professed remake her vows for three more years.
5. SECOND NOVITIATE
Before pronouncing perpetual vows, each Little Sister spends a year of “Second Novitiate” at LA Tour Saint Joseph, our Motherhouse in Brittany, France. This period offers each one the grace of living where Saint Jeanne Jugan spent the last 23 years of her life. During this time each Little Sister becomes more imbued with the attitudes of our Mother Foundress and with the spirit of universality so important to our international religious family. The second novitiate culminates in Perpetual Profession, after which each Little Sister may be sent to any one of the countries around the world
6. CONTINUED FORMATION
In order to progress in the field of hospitality each Little Sister pursues appropriate professional studies. She also deepens her spiritual life with a personal program of on-going formation throughout her life. Regular sessions of spiritual renewal courses help her to start afresh from Christ.
“WHAT HAPPINESS FOR US TO BE A LITTLE SISTER OF THE POOR!"
Saint Jeanne Jugan
“May our God make you worthy of his calling and may he, by his power, fulfil all your good purposes and your work prompted by faith. In that way, the name of Jesus our Lord will be glorified through you, and you through him, according to the loving plan of our God and of Jesus Christ our Lord.” (2Thesse. 1: 11-12 )