Cheerful & well-educated: the draw to Dominicans

Click here for a Spanish translation of this post.

After interviewing Sister Vivien I learned a lot about why she became a Dominican sister. When she was at the tender age of 18, she entered the community because she saw Dominican sisters as cheerful and well-educated, and she wanted that type of life for herself. She is the youngest of six girls, and Sister Vivien explained she was the only one who felt called to religious life. She was attracted to the fact that Dominican sisters were studious, joyful and dedicated to both religion and their work, and those traits helped influence her decision. She also entered the Dominican community because she wanted to be involved in education and teaching.

Sister Vivien credits being part of the Dominican community for aiding in some of her many accomplishments. For example, during the time she was superior general of the order in Caldwell she was able to have what is now Marian Manor built. Apartment buildings are frequently constructed now, but at the time many Caldwell citizens were against the idea of having outside residents become part of their town and feared they would threaten the character of the town. However, Sister Vivien and the Dominican sisters fought hard and were granted the rights to build the apartment. Thanks to her leadership skills, the Dominican sisters and the community that stood behind her, the Marion Building has been a beneficial and great addition to Caldwell.

After starting as a lay student at Caldwell College, Sister Vivien has come a long way and has given back to the Caldwell community a thousand times over. The Caldwell community and I are so grateful that she chose to become a Dominican sister because she has had great accomplishments for the town of Caldwell and the university. She has become a role model for me, and I can only hope to achieve as much as she has.

About Kerry McGrath

Kerry McGrath is a junior at Caldwell University. She is a communications and media studies major and a political science minor. She hopes to work in TV broadcast or sports after graduation. She is excited to be part of this project while she learns about and helps preserve the history of Catholic Sisters. Kerry is also excited to get to know a Dominican Sister personally. During the Spring of 2016 she was paired with Sister Vivien Jennings, OP; a Dominican Sister of Caldwell