Dominican Associate Life

The very purpose of the gifts of the spirit - is to share them.

Dominican Associates are non-vowed women and men who desire to practice their Christian faith in the spirit of the Dominican Order of Preachers.

Our mission is to Preach in all ways through Prayer, Justice, Community, Service, Joy, and Study. Touched by the Holy One, we journey in solidarity with the Dominican Sisters of Grand Rapids and with one another. Connecting and collaborating in Christian mission and spirituality, we embrace the Dominican charism ministering in joyful faith and compassionate love.

We participate in the faith and spirituality of the Congregation through family and faith community life, prayer, study groups, involvement in matters of social justice, and service.

One hundred fifty Associates have made commitment to Associate Life, supporting one another and bringing Dominican values to their family, community, place of worship and workplace.

Becoming an Associate

If you choose to begin the mentoring process to learn more about the Associates, you will meet monthly over several months to explore the defining characteristics of Dominican life and mission.

During the mentoring process, an Associate and a Sister will meet with you for those conversations as you explore what it means to become an Associate of the Dominican Sisters ~ Grand Rapids.

We welcome you to learn about prayer, study, service and community, and about St. Dominic and St. Catherine of Siena. You will reflect on the importance of seeking truth, praising God and witnessing to the gospel with joy! And, you will also be discerning if joining the Associates feels right for you.

Are You Interested?

Lisa Mitchell, Director of Associate Life
616-514-3115 ext. 3115 or toll free: 1-800-253-7343

Learn More

How do I begin?


You begin by connecting with our Associate Director to request an application. You can call 616.514.3115 or email Completing this application is an important first step in the discernment process.  Once you have e-mailed, mailed, or dropped off your completed application, a meeting will be scheduled for a conversation to explore what you are seeking and how becoming a Dominican Associate may align with your life journey.

What does the mentoring process to become an Associate involve?


Mentoring sessions engage prospective Associates in the pillars of the Dominican Charism: Community, Prayer, Study, and Ministry/Service. The mentoring process to become an Associate draws on the wisdom and practices of spirituality practiced by Dominicans over eight centuries. During the discernment year, prospective Associates and Mentors study and reflect on the Dominican heritage, so focused on the Word of God, which holds up:

  • liturgical and contemplative prayer,
  • personal and communal study,
  • concern for the common life, and
  • service to those most in need.

How long does it take to become an Associate?


Discernment to become an Associate is a personal exploration. The mentoring process is designed to help Prospective Associates discern whether they wish to become an Associate of the Dominican Sisters ~ Grand Rapids. From October to June, prospective Associates meet with a Sister and Associate Mentor to learn about Dominican Spirituality and mission, and of sharing our stories in faith and of faith. Our hope is that the time you will spend in this process will:

• engage you in fruitful relationships with Dominican Sisters and Associates.
• acquaint you with the richness of Dominican spirituality and mission.
• deepen your spiritual journey.
• assist your discernment.

Who are the Mentors?


Mentors are women and men, Sisters and Associates, who have found in Dominican life and mission a spirituality that has both form and substance and that enriches their faith and relationship with Jesus of the Gospels and early Church tradition and with the God of Creation.

Associate Life News & Events

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New 2018-2024 Leadership Team Installed During Mass at Dominican Chapel at Marywood


Dominican Sisters Day of Service


Saint Series Presents Elizabeth Ann Seton