Devotional Vows

Dear Jesuit woman,

Below you will find a picture of the vows I took to Jesus in August 2017, in the context of a vows mass of the Society of Jesus.  The vow formula is the one used by our brothers when they take perpetual simple vows, at the end of a two-year discernment process in a formal novitiate.    The same formula is sometimes offered to novices to take privately, before their canonical commitment, as a way to express and increase personal devotion to growth in freedom and friendship with Christ.  You can find this vow on p. 208 of The Constitutions of the Society of Jesus and Their Complementary Norms .  There are a variety of translations, and I also have a copy of this version, in this calligraphy, but with no name, so that if any woman is called to make this vow, she might have that opportunity, and have her own copy of the vow, too.  Please let me know if you want to talk more about this.  In my experience it was good to discuss it multiple times with another person, and also good to take some time to discern carefully whether it was the right thing for me to make this vow at that particular time.

Another very interesting and beautiful passage on p. 208 reads: “Just as this vow is made to God alone and not to a man, {so no man receives it.}  This is the reason why it is not said to be made into the hands of anyone.”  (The bold text was part of the original Constitutions, but was abolished because the vow is canonical for Jesuit men, which is to say it is received legally, the name of the Church, by a superior.)  However, the heart of vow remains intact – it is a commitment to God alone.  Food for thought. +

Vows Calligraphy