How to Become a Nun After a Divorce

Written by amy davidson
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How to Become a Nun After a Divorce
Becoming a nun means dedicating your life to the church and order of your choice. (glauben image by Yvonne Bogdanski from

A nun is a woman who gives herself to the Catholic church and serves in monasteries or convents. Becoming a nun in the Catholic Church requires considerable contemplation. Being divorced can be a major hurdle to becoming a nun. The Catholic church doesn't recognise divorce often and generally holds that divorced women cannot become nuns, but there are a few exceptions.

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  1. 1

    Meet with a priest. Discuss the reasons you want to become a nun. Priests are trained to ask you the hard questions and make you think about whether a lifetime with the church is a commitment you can and want to make.

  2. 2

    Fill out an application form for annulment by the church. You can get these from any Catholic church. The priest can help you fill it out. For an annulment you must first be divorced in a civil court, then prove to the church that the marriage was entered into with information being kept from one or both parties. For example, if your spouse lied about wanting to have kids or cheated on you multiple times.

  3. 3

    Research and visit orders in your area or abroad. Orders are like colleges or clubs for nuns, and each one has different rules and strictness ideals. Depending on your church, annulment can take a year or longer to be granted, so during this waiting period, visit orders to find the one you want to apply to. Plan to meet with your priest once every couple of weeks to discuss orders you have visited and how they suit you.

  4. 4

    Check the recruitment criteria for the order you have selected. Some require that you have a certain number of community service hours, certifications from the church or even specific college degrees. Fulfil all requirements. For something as involved as getting a degree, you might be able to join the order and obtain your degree while training to become a nun.

  5. 5

    Join the order you have selected once your annulment is granted. If the church does not grant the annulment, then you cannot become a nun following your divorce. In many cases, if you can show any falsehood in your marriage, the church will eventually grant an annulment.

  6. 6

    Study the rules of the church and your order. Follow any training required by your order stringently. Beginning training varies from order to order but can be anywhere from one to four years. During this time you will begin living the chaste lifestyle of a nun and developing a daily routine for prayer and worship. If you choose to follow through after the training period, you can take your vows and join a monastery or convent to begin your life as a woman of the church.

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