Capuchin Vocation Office

Discernment » Novitiate


Novitiate is a time of intense prayer and reflection. Novices are encouraged to deepen their life of prayer and move toward a definite commitment to the religious life as Capuchins. Besides prayer and classes, they also serve in the ministry of hospitality and other limited ministries in the local area. After one year of novitiate the novices make their first vows as Capuchin Franciscan Friars.
“Let the rhythm of the Novitiate respond to the primary aspects of our religious life, particularly through a special experience of faith, contemplative prayer, fraternal life, contact with the poor and work."  Capuchin Constitutions 29:4
The novitiate program is conducted in Santa Ynez, California and concentrates on developing our brother’s spiritual life even more intensely.
Our one-year collaborative novitiate program includes all the provinces of the United States, Canada, Guam, and Australia, giving the novices an opportunity to have an experience of the wider Capuchin order.  At investiture, the novices receives their habit, cord, rosary and sandals- signs of their consecration and witnesses of their poverty.

During the novitiate year, the novices grow in their Capuchin identity and further discern their particular vocation.  The novitiate environment allows the novices to prepare for the profession of simple vows (poverty, chastity, and obedience) at the end of the novitiate year.  The novices focuses on his inner spiritual growth; minister to the poor and the marginalized; attend workshops and conferences; and meet with their formation director to reflect on what is happening in their life.