If you are feeling called to explore a deeper involvement in the Sisterhood of Belle Cœur,
the following information will be helpful for your discernment.
In 2017, Belle Cœur Online Independent Study Formation Program will be available. for women called to experience Belle Cœur spirituality and community as a Belle Cœur Sister, Companion, or student. Online Formation study will include spiritual enrichment, prayer, sacred study, journaling and creative expression are the threads throughout formation inspired by the story, teachings, and practices described in the books Ink and Honey and The Way of Belle Cœur.
If you are feeling called to apply for formation as a Sister or Companion Sister of Belle Cœur, the following overview of key points pertaining to our community will be helpful for your discernment.
Belle Cœur Sisterhood is…
- Ecumenical: We are a Christ-centered, progressive Christian community with roots in the medieval Beguine movement, and the teachings of the early feminine Christian mystics.
- Inclusive and diverse: We are accepting and respectful of each sister’s personal relationship and expression of her relationship with God.
- An independent community: Our community of Companion Sisters and Sisters of Belle Cœur are independent and not affiliated with a specific Christian doctrine or religion. Sisters and Companion Sisters do not take professed vows of any kind and are free to leave the community if called to do so.
- Reliant on the guidance/movement of the Spirit and the form of the Circle: We follow the principles for group process (rotating leadership, shared responsibility, and reliance on Spirit) presented in The Circle Way, by Christina Baldwin and Ann Linnea. We take time for silence, discernment, and reflection and listen and respond to the Spirit’s guidance as we evolve and grow our wisdom in community.
- Honoring of each Sister’s charism: Each Companion Sister and Sister of Belle Cœur reflects her charism (unique wisdom, life experience, and creative/spiritual forms of expression). Our community respects, values, and relies upon each Sister’s charism to enrich our collective experience.
The Three Tracts of Belle Cœur Study:
To become a Sister of Belle Cœur: Following the completion of the application process and acceptance to the program a “novice” registers for the entire formation course as a “Sister in Formation.” As she begins formation, each novice is introduced to her Sister Mentor who provides support throughout formation via a monthly phone/Skype visit. Upon completion of the course and approval of the participant’s final project, the new sister receives a certificate of completion as “Sister of Belle Cœur” and is invited to attend the next scheduled Belle Cœur Sisterhood Community and Retreat where she will be initiated and welcomed into the community as a full Sister of Belle Cœur.
To become a Companion Sister of Belle Cœur: For the woman desirous of a contemplative/reclusive Belle Cœur Companion relationship rather than active sisterhood affiliation, the application and registration for the Companion Sister is the same process as outlined above in #1. Accompaniment with a Sister Mentor is also available for Companion Sisters. Upon completion of formation, a certificate of completion as “Companion Sister of Belle Cœur” is received. Companion Sisters are invited to attend the next scheduled Belle Cœur Sisterhood Community Retreat for initiation and personal welcome to the community as “Companion Sister of Belle Cœur.” The receipt of Belle Cœur publications, notices, invitations, and inclusion in Belle Cœur social media groups are optional for Companion Sisters. As a contemplative, her level of active presence within the community is self-directed.
Belle Cœur individual online courses for personal enrichment: For those who are called to personal study of one or more units independently for personal spiritual/creative enrichment – rather than formation and preparation to become part of the Belle Cœur community as a Companion Sister or Sister of Belle Cœur:
No application is required. Upon registration, a Belle Cœur student is provided the documents and audio files for her choice of specific unit(s). She does not receive a certificate of completion or Belle Cœur Sister/Companion associated resources, publications, mentor, etc.
Women called to Belle Cœur Sisterhood as sister or companion will be required to complete an application and conduct a phone/Zoom interview with a Belle Cœur sister. To request an application, please fill out the form on this page.
It is encouraged that you prepare your application for Belle Cœur Formation and use the time for prayerful discernment to affirm one’s call to Belle Cœur. Once a participant has applied, been interviewed, accepted and registered she will receive the link and password to access the online formation program, make payment arrangements, and be introduced to her Sister Mentor.