Discernment Tools

Suggested Websites

Suggested Reading

  • Appointment with God – Fr. Michael Scanlon, TOR
  • Discerning the Will of God – Fr. Timothy M. Gallagher, OMI
  • God’s Voice Within – Fr. Mark E. Thibodeaux, SJ
  • The Holy Longing: The Search for a Christian Spirituality – Fr. Ronald Rolheiser, OMI
  • In Good Company: The Fast Track from the Corporate World to Poverty, Chastity, and Obedience – Fr. James Martin, SJ
  • Meet Mary: Getting to Know the Mother of God – Mark Miravalle
  • My Sisters the Saints: A Spiritual Memoir – Colleen Carroll Campbell
  • Paying Attention to God – Fr. William Barry, SJ
  • Rediscovering Catholicism – Matthew Kelly
  • Under the Mantle: Marian Thoughts from a 21st Century Priest – Donald H. Calloway
  • Visits to the Most Blessed Sacrament and to Blessed Virgin Mary – St. Alphonsus Liguori
  • 15 Days of Prayer with St. Alphonsus Liguori – Jean-Marie Segalen, C.Ss.R.
  • 33 Days to Morning Glory: A Do-It-Yourself Retreat in Preparation for Marian Consecration – Fr. Michael Gaitley, MIC

In addition, any book on a saint’s life would be a great read.

Suggested Prayers

  • Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament 
  • The Angelus  – Our Founder encouraged the first young woman discerning a vocation to our community to pray the Angelus each day.
  • Hail, Holy Queen (Salve Regina) – From the Redemptorist tradition, the IHM sisters pray this daily for the grace of perseverance.
  • The Rosary – As part of our prayer tradition, the IHM sisters pray the rosary daily.
  • The Way of the Cross – by St. Alphonsus Liguori or other versions of the Stations of the Cross. 

Suggested Practices

Monthly Virtues

St. Alphonsus encouraged the practice of listing monthly virtues and patrons, matching the twelve apostles with the twelve months of the year accompanied by a scriptural text.  From the earliest days and throughout the history of the IHM Congregation, the sisters have continued this tradition of imitating a patron and of deepening their practice of a virtue each month.


Virtue: Faith
Patron: Saints Peter and Paul
Text: “I am the light of the world.” (Jn. 8:12)


Virtue: Hope
Patron: St. Andrew
Text: “Because he hoped in me, I will deliver him; I will protect him, because he knows My name.” (Ps. 91:14)


Virtue: The Love of God
Patron: St. James the Great
Text: “You shall love the Lord your God with your whole heart, with your whole soul, with your whole mind, and with your whole strength.” (Mk. 12:30)


Virtue: The Love of Our Neighbor
Patron: St. John
Text: “This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.” (Jn. 15:12)


Virtue: Poverty
Patron: St. Thomas
Text: “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” (Mt. 5:3)


Virtue: Purity of Heart
Patron: St. James the Less
Text: “Blessed are the clean of heart, for they shall see God.” (Mt. 5:8)


Virtue: Obedience
Patron: St. Philip
Text: “You are My friends if you do the things that I command you.” (Jn. 15:14)


Virtue: Meekness and Humility of Heart
Patron: St. Bartholomew
Text: “Learn of Me, because I am meek and humble of heart.” (Mt. 11:29) 


Virtue: Mortification
Patron: St. Matthew
Text: “He who hates his life in this world preserves it for eternal life.” (Jn. 12:25)


Virtue: Recollection and Silence
Patron: St. Simon
Text: “Jesus, having dismissed the multitude, went to a mountain alone to pray.” (Mt. 14:23)


Virtue: Prayer
Patron: St. Thaddeus
Text: “We ought always to pray and not to faint.” (Lk. 18:1)


Virtue: Self-Abnegation and the Love of the Cross
Patron: St. Matthias
Text: “If any man will come after Me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.” (Mt. 16:24)