I am Catholic and feel I might be called to the life, but I have a mild medical condition and need to take medicine. Would I still be able to be a nun or would I be refused just because medicine costs a little bit of money? I’m in my early 40’s would I be denied entry just because I’m not under 39 or 35 or 25 (I know some other orders say be under this age or that age and one I saw requires you to be under 25)?


Thank you for your question submitted to our website and please know I am praying for you as you discern your vocation. I believe the Vocation Director at most monasteries of women today would make a conscientious effort to place the fact of your medical condition in the larger picture of the mystery of a possible monastic vocation. Their primary concern would be to examine the signs of a call to monastic life. This should be your focus too.

My suggestion would be to contact the Vocation Director at a particular monastery and initiate a conversation that fosters an honest and open relationship. Your reliance on a particular medicine need not be the first thing you tell her about yourself. Let her meet you and hear your story. Share with her your heart and what you consider to be the more important signs of a possible vocation. Let her taste a little the mystery of this calling you experience, and then, when the moment seems right, inform her about your medical needs. Then, you “let go and let God”, and trust her to make the best decision she can. (They might inquire into the possibility of your own insurance covering the cost of your medicine until you take perpetual vows as a nun.)

Regarding age limits, these vary from monastery to monastery. Some will not initiate a discernment process with persons over a certain age, but others will. I believe it is not uncommon for monasteries, these days, to set the upper age limit at about 45, so it would be worth your while to contact a Vocation Director at a monastery you feel attracted to. I hope this is helpful. God bless you!