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Why I Entered the Cloister - Dominican Nuns, Marbury, Alabama

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Jun. 20, 2014

Dear College Students,
A group of young women on a Nun Run stopped by our monastery recently.  “Why did you enter the cloister?” they asked.  Here are a few of our responses:
“When I was in college, a group of us attended a retreat given by a dynamic young Dominican priest.  ‘What is the most important thing in your life?’ he asked us.  Getting good grades, we said; or landing a job, or finding a good spouse.  ‘Those are all good things,’ Father responded, ‘but not the most important thing.  The most important thing in your life is knowing God’s Will—and doing it.’  I had been taught by Sisters my whole life, but no one ever thought I would be a nun!  After Father’s talk, however, I became convinced that God’s Will for my life was to serve Him as a cloistered nun.  Father recommended the Dominican nuns at Marbury, Alabama.  I came, and I stayed—that was over 60 years ago.”
“Towards the beginning of high school, I was pretty sure God was calling me to be a Sister, but I didn’t know which community I should join.  When the special vocation issue of our Catholic newspaper arrived, I eagerly scanned page after page, but not a single community jumped out at me.  ‘Dear Jesus,’ I told Our Lord during Eucharistic Adoration, ‘these communities do teaching and nursing and so many wonderful works for You . . . but isn’t there any community that just adores You?’  Some time afterward I saw a little notice in a Marian newsletter about these Dominican nuns at Marbury, dedicated to Eucharistic Adoration and Perpetual Rosary.  I fell in love with St. Dominic and the Dominican charism, and came as soon as I could after graduation.”
“I always wanted to be a nun, as long as I can remember.  When I was around 10 or 11 I began attending Vocation Camp, and was very attracted to the Dominican teaching Sisters.  They were just great!  But as I got a little older I became more and more drawn to the cloistered contemplative vocation.  I contacted some cloisters, but nothing seemed right until I received an invitation to attend a Vocation Retreat with some cloistered Dominican nuns in Alabama.  ‘Wow!’ I thought.  ‘Cloistered Dominicans!’  When I came to visit, everything seemed just made for me: love for Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament, and for His Blessed Mother; Latin chant; Dominican zeal for Truth and for the salvation of souls.  To give myself totally to Jesus through Mary in simplicity and joy: this was an ideal I could see myself embracing with my whole heart.”
As Dominican Nuns, we live a hidden life of adoration, praise and intercession at the heart of the preaching of the Dominican Order.  We are happy to be “united in prayer” with you too, asking Our Lady, Queen of the Rosary, to obtain for you all the graces you need at this time in your life.
If you would like to learn more about our Dominican monastic vocation, you can visit our website at
May God bless and Our Lady keep you!
With prayers in Our Lady,
Mother Mary Joseph, O.P. and Sisters
Dominican Nuns
Dominican Monastery of St. Jude
153 County Road 20 East
Marbury, Alabama 36051