What attracts today’s young women to the contemplative life?

Nine young people participated in the vocational meeting that the Augustinian contemplative gatherings held in Bogotá (Colombia) in order to show their charisma and help the girls discern in their vocation.

In a society like the current one – secularized and individualistic – it may seem strange that young girls are interested in religious life. However, God’s ways are always inscrutable. Nine young people participated in the vocational coexistence that the Augustinian contemplative gatherings of Bogotá made from October 11 to 14. The girls, from various departments of Colombia, spent three days with the closing religious of the convent of Our Lady of the Candelaria, reflecting on their mission in the world.

‘God hears the cry of your heart’ was the motto of the vocational encounter. Starting from this base, the Augustinian contemplative gatherings invited the young women to arrange their hearts to hear the voice of God. They also announced the Augustinian Recollect charism to the nine girls and helped them discern their vocation. In addition to God, it was an encounter with themselves because, knowing their wounds and healing them, they can more easily perceive the will of God.

Entering the convent, at first, and considering the work that God wants for oneself can be compromising. Therefore, it is not uncommon for young women to reach the convent with many expectations and fears. However, the good reception of the contemplative community made them gain confidence, closeness and joy. Only in this way can the heart be opened to the Lord.

Responding to the question of the title, young women are attracted to religious life in 2019 by many factors: a desire for absolute surrender and lifestyle, difficult to understand from outside the convent but attractive contemplating the day-to-day life of the nuns who live in the closing.

Before these young women, a range of possibilities was opened to discover, not only the contemplative life. The purpose of these coexistence is to accompany the young women to discern their vocation in a broad sense. “We feel satisfied and enriched with their experiences,” say the Augustinian nuns gathered.