Discerning the will of Christ
Many are interested in the mechanics of how you enter a religious community, but the standard on which this works is a living one: the quest by all involved to discern the will of Christ as embodied in the monastic tradition and the particular traditions and people that make up this or any community.
If you are interested in exploring a vocation, contact Oswin CR.
We welcome those exploring a vocation to the religious life to live alongside the Community for shorter or longer periods and share a part in our life. This can take a variety of forms.
Membership of the community
If you want to explore the possibility of permanent commitment in the Community, the starting point is to make an informal visit. There is no rigid pattern for the next stage of the process of discernment, but there would usually be several further visits in which you would learn something about our life and take part in a way that helps you gain a feel for it.
In due course, if we thought it right for you to test your vocation, you would come into residence as a Postulant. The postulancy normally lasts 4 months. The next stage, if it seems right to continue, would be to become a Novice. Novices receive a thorough induction into the life, with other training appropriate to their gifts and previous experience. In the old days they were expected to be seen and not heard: times have changed, and we expect a novice to take a mature part in most levels of the Community life. While the novitiate is an apprenticeship with much to learn and un-learn, novices need to be able to relate to others in the Community as an equal.
The Novitiate normally lasts about two and a half years, at the end of which the novice either goes forward to make Simple Vows or he leaves. The period in Simple Vows is normally three years, at the end of which come the Solemn Vows, when the brother promises to live in the Community for life. If the brother does not wish to go forward to Solemn Vows, or if the Community’s Chapter is not of that view, an extension for a specific period may be possible. Click here to learn more about The Vows.
Visit or Stay
We welcome you to come to CR and to share in our life. Some come regularly to talk with a brother, others spend a day or two experiencing this very different environment. Individuals and groups come on retreat and pilgrimage, share in the teaching and courses we offer and join us in worship and meals.