A Day in the Lifeof a Girl in Formation in Rome
On an average day in the House of Formation in Rome my alarm sounds at 6:00 am alerting me that I have an hour to fully wake up, eat breakfast, and be ready to leave for school. Arriving to the chapel at 7:00 am for Morning Prayer, we often find our founder Fr. Salvatore already there in his normal chair ready to pray with us and send us off with a blessing and the typical “have a good day” (always said in English!). We get to the Pontifical University of St. John Lateran by means of our feet, the tram, and the subway arriving around 8 am after about 45 minutes of travel time. With still a half hour until classes start, we gather in the chapel for our meditation. From 8:35 am to 12:00 or 12:45 pm, depending on the day, we are in the same classroom with the same classmates where the professors come to us. For all five years of our study (two years of Philosophy and three years of Theology) we study and take oral exams in Italian.
By means of the same transportation we arrive home in time for a late lunch (by American standards) around 1:00 or 1:30 pm, depending on the day. After lunch we pray Midday Prayer together and the afternoon, which varies day by day, officially begins. Two constants in each afternoon are personal prayer (rosary, adoration, spiritual reading) and chores (a rotation of cooking, doing dishes, cleaning floors and bathrooms). Otherwise we are free to organize time for rest or have some personal “me-time” which could mean learning guitar, exercise, or calling friends and family. One day a week we do apostolate in the afternoon at a local public university. There we do evangelization on campus and lead adoration in the campus chapel. Some afternoons we have time to study, reading for class or looking over our notes. Other times we might have community projects to work on like preparation for a retreat, gathering information, or writing a meditation. On Saturdays we go to the local market to pick up the fruits, vegetables, and meat that they generously donate to us. Of course we must then spend a couple of hours in the kitchen cleaning and organizing them. Let’s just say that one never has the problem of too much free time here in Rome!
At 7:00 pm we once again gather in the chapel for Mass and Evening Prayer with Fr. Salvatore. This is followed by supper at around 8:00 pm. Then we have” recreation” or community time together when we sometimes play board games or cards, have sharing time, do arts and crafts, or play music. It is an important part of our day in which we spend time with each other like any other family would do. Our day ends around 10:00 pm in the chapel with Jesus where we do Night Prayer before heading off to our rooms and getting ready for bed. With the full days that we have I must say that I am often happy to see my bed but I just as often fall asleep with a smile excited to see where the Lord will lead me in the next, unpredictable new day here in Rome.
Typical Schedule of the Day
6:00 am – wake up, eat breakfast and get ready for school
7:00 am – Morning Prayer in the chapel with our founder Fr. Salvatore
7:15 am – go to school
8:00 am – arrive at school and pray meditation in the university chapel
8:35 am – classes start: we study two years of philosophy and three of theology (ALL in Italian)
12:00/12:45 – classes finish and we go back home
1:00/1:30 – lunch back at the house and Midday Prayer
Afternoon (depends on the day; every day activities in bold):
Rest (this could mean a nap, light reading, creative project)
Chores (each day we rotate cooking, dishes, cleaning)
Apostolate (some days we go to St. Peter’s to do evangelization and lead adoration and on Sundays we help at a parish)
Personal prayer (rosary, adoration, spiritual reading)
Study (reading for class or looking over notes)
“Me-time” (learning guitar, exercise, making a gift for someone, calling friends/family)
Community projects (preparation for retreats, writing meditations)
Market (only Saturday – the picking up and cleaning of the fruits, vegetables, fish and meat donated to us)
7:00 pm – Mass and Evening Prayer in the chapel with founder Fr. Salvatore
8:00 pm – Dinner
9:00 pm – Recreation together (board games, cards, sharing, arts and crafts, music)
10:00 pm – Night Prayer in the chapel and bedtime
Interested in living this way of life?
Reach out to our vocation’s director