Sister John Dominic has been a nun for nearly 30 years and says the transition to the church is often harder on the sister's family than the woman herself. "Any mother, the moment they lay their eyes on their child, they have dreams for them," she says. "And they [ask], 'What is my child going to be?'"

She says her own mother was upset with her decision. "I became a Catholic when I was in high school," she says. "Not being Catholic and not being exposed to it was very difficult for her. I had a family member that had been in a cult, so her idea was that I would be cut off from the world, I would be brainwashed and I wouldn't be able to think for myself."

Over time, Sister John Dominic says her mother realized she was still the daughter she'd always known. "They begin to see that we become who we are. My personality hasn't changed," she says. "They begin to see the freedom and the joy in that and there's an acceptance, and she's my biggest supporter now."

Sister Mary Judith says her brothers are always amazed she hasn't become a different person. "[They're] quite amused that I'm just the same person I was before—but almost more so," she says. "If it's your calling, if this is what you're meant to be, you're going to become more of yourself over time."


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