7 Stages of Discernment – The Third Stage

Stage 3: Assessment Period

A woman in stage 3 realizes that this attraction to religious life will not go away, even though she has tried to avoid it. She is now making a more serious effort to grow in her faith and prayer life. She spends time in Eucharistic adoration, attends daily Mass when possible and goes to Confession regularly. She might find a spiritual director because she realizes she needs help in discerning. Her love for God is maturing and she begins to understand the joy of laying down her life for Jesus and his Church. Her desire to serve others is growing and she experiences joy in serving.

In this stage she begins to assess different fears: the fear of loneliness, of separation from family and friends, fear of the unknown, of not being holy enough, fear of letting go of the things of the world. With the help of her spiritual director she begins to assess her qualities to see if she has the capacity to become a consecrated woman. Although she is discreet she begins to tell persons about her discernment. She may go on discernment retreats.


The primary emotions is still fear, though there is a growing love and trust in God. Though she may still hope that God is not calling her to religious life she begins to also see she could be happy and fulfilled as a sister. For the first time, she feels a small measure of excitement that God may be calling her to be a bride of Christ.

Next Week:  Stage 4 – Discernment Shift…

This entry was posted by Sponsa Christi.

One thought on “7 Stages of Discernment – The Third Stage

  1. Indeed this is true but what happens if her family is not in support of this new path. What does she do?
    Dear Amanda – when one is discerning God’s plan for her life she must follow the promptings of the Holy Spirit. God’s grace is sufficient, not only for her but God has special graces in store for the family as well. Your loved ones are the first to benefit from your response to God’s grace! Maintain your daily prayer life and grow in personal friendship with Jesus – He will show you the path to follow that will bring personal fulfillment to you and also to your family. Stay close to our Blessed Mother. Her “yes” to God’s mysterious plan was instrumental in the salvation of the world!
    – Sponsa Christi

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