During this time, called the pre-novitiate, she discerns, together with the community, if she has a personal call from Christ and the aptitude to live the FMM life. She gradually discovers the FMM vocation and charism. At the end of this time, she decides whether to enter religious life or choose to follow a different path.
The novitiate, which lasts at least two years, marks the beginning of religious life. It is the intensive time of initial formation. Its aim is to ensure that the novices receive formation in accordance with the FMM Constitutions and to provide opportunity for discernment in the evolution of their vocation. At the end of this time, the novices make vows of poverty, chastity and obedience for three years.
This is a period when the temporary professed religious deepen their prayer life, experience the depths of community living and may be sent on a temporary mission outside of their own country.
Before making final profession, each sister has a period of reflection and prayer lasting from three to six months depending on her needs. At this time of final profession, the sister receives her first mission sending from the General Superior, assigning her to a mission that may be in any country of the world where there is an FMM presence.
Once a young woman is accepted to begin preparation for life as a Franciscan Missionary of Mary, she will spend a period, usually about a year, living with a community of FMM sisters.