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When you shall see a soul leave all things to adhere to the Word with all her strength, live by Him, allow herself to be guided by Him, conceive what she should bring forth by Him, a soul, in short who can say for me to live is Christ and to die is gain, then you can indubitably recognize a spouse of Christ.

— St. Bernard

Discernment of a vocation infallibly begins with silence before the Word, openness to His direction and a generous response. A daily heart-to-Heart with the Lord is the beginning of the love story of every Bride of Christ.

Religious life is an attachment to God alone, as the Latin root implies, an anticipation of enjoying Him in this life, “the vestibule of heaven,” as Ven. Maria Teresa Quevedo put it so succinctly. It may be something as simple as a natural inclination toward the religious life that sparks the knowledge of a vocation.


After some initial correspondence with the Novice Mistress, including a questionnaire to be filled out, a young woman may be invited to spend a full week with us. “Lord, where are you staying?” “Come and see,” He told His apostles. (Jn. 1:39)

This visit enables the soul to see if the Lord is calling her to be His spouse within our particular monastic family with its attendant spirituality and charism. This is a very necessary part of discernment process in order to place oneself within the context of our daily life. She may then write to petition for entry as a postulant.

If you are an unmarried, healthy, Catholic woman practicing the Faith for at least two years, and are between the ages of 16 and 30, you may contact the Novice Mistress at the following email address:

Or by snail mail:
Novice Mistress
Abbey of Our Lady of Ephesus
8005 NW 316th Street
Gower, MO 64454