A Daughter of the King on Answering a Call
A few weeks ago, Cathedral Lay Minister Owene Courtney asked that I write an article about my call to the monastic life. She is one of many people to whom I am extremely grateful for supporting me through this period of vulnerability and uncertainty.
During Advent of 2015, I was feeling spiritually exhausted. I am a Daughter of the King, an usher, a Flower Guild member, and a member of the Center for Prayer and Spirituality. These will always be vital facets of who I am, but I was feeling a tug for something else. During a heartfelt talk with Fr. Carl Saxton, he asked, "But, who are you?" I was unable to answer this question. He helped me step away from these more active roles of Christian service and spend that Advent deeply listening. After Advent, I told him that I was feeling led to explore the monastic life. He arranged for meetings with a Spiritual Companion, and over the next few months we discussed new monasticism vs. traditional monasticism, and which would be a better fit for me.
In October 2016, I wanted to personally visit a monastic community to get a feel for how I would fit in with it. I visited the Order of St. Helena in North Augusta, South Carolina as a guest of Sister Ellen Francis. In November 2016, my nephew moved to Seattle, Washington, and it became apparent to me that I needed to remain a close drive away from my aging parents. While discussing these developments with Dean Kate, she suggested the option of forming a monastic community at our church and using the Rotchford House.
During the Daughters of the King Christmas party in 2016, Susan Towson mentioned that she would like to help establish a Mother House of DOK sisters who want to live in a monastic community. Susan discussed this opportunity with the strategic planning committee of the National Council of the DOK, and they have agreed to look into the possibility of having nuns in the order. Since then we have formed our own committee to assess this opportunity, comprised of Susan Towson, Beth Wilson, Donna Meyers-Perry, Judy Martin and myself. After several meetings, we met with the Vestry to lease the second floor of the Rotchford House. We have changed its name to the Still Waters House, and there will be more news soon regarding the use of the house.
Last month, I again visited Sister Ellen Francis at the OSH, and she agreed to be my mentor during the monastic formation process. I have begun my initial training, with plans to take more formal vows. I truly appreciate your prayers as this process develops.
For His sake,
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