Orientation Program for New Vocation Directors

Orientation Program for New Vocation Directors

October 12-16, 2021

Click here to register now.

Registration is limited to 23 participants.

This workshop is intended for new and recently appointed vocation directors. Its goal is to provide participants with the skills, context, theory, challenges and practicalities of contemporary vocation ministry. Topics will include foundational elements of vocation ministry; assessment of inquirers and discerners; application and admission process; vocation promotion, ethics and boundaries, resiliency and self-care of the vocation director.

Please note this five-day workshop begins on October 12 at 8:30 a.m. and ends on October 16 at 4:30 p.m. Central time. Overnight accommodations are contracted for 6 nights, arrival after 3:00 p.m. on October 11 and check out by 9:00 a.m. on October 17.

All Fall Institute workshops include overnight accommodations at the Mercy Conference and Retreat Center. Enjoy the convenience of having a private bedroom and bathroom, along with linen service, wi-fi, meals and breaks. All participants must be fully vaccinated and abide by all safety protocols set by the venue. There are no exceptions. 

Workshop fees

NRVC member: $1625                                       $2,437 Non-member

Workshop fees include overnight accommodations, materials, speaker stipends, facility fees, all meals, and breaks. Reservations are contracted for arrivals after 3:00 p.m. the day before the workshop begins and check-out is by 9:00 a.m. the day after the workshop ends. This means you are responsible for the full payment of the room reservation, regardless of your arrival and departure date. Unfortunately, room reservations cannot be made for earlier arrivals or later departures. You can store your luggage in the lounge if you are not ready to leave by 9:00 a.m. on the day of your departure, however you must vacate your room to allow the staff to clean your room for the next arrival on the same day. If you are staying for the next workshop, you will not need to check out or pay any additional fees.     

Late registration

Registrations received after September 20 incur a $50 late fee. 

Cancellation policy

Cancellations for workshops must be received in writing to debbiesscm@nrvc.net before September 20 to receive a full refund less a $100 processing fee. After September 20, all fees are non refundable. 


All workshops include daily Mass at 11:15 a.m. and time for personal prayer. If you are willing to preside at Mass, cantor, lector, or as an Extraordinary Minister of the Eucharist, please email debbiesscm@nrvc.net


Brother Joseph Bach, O.S.F., is a Franciscan Brother of Brooklyn and currently ministers as Director of Vocations for his Congregation. Previously, he ministered in Education as a teacher and administrator on the elementary, secondary, and university levels. He holds a Master of Arts degree in Education from St. Xavier University, a graduate certificate in Franciscan Studies, and is currently completing a Post Master’s Certificate in Spiritual Formation at Boston College.  He also studied at the Institute for Black Catholic Studies at Xavier University of Louisiana. In addition to vocation ministry, Brother Joseph is also a consultant for the Office of Mission, Ministry, and Interfaith Dialogue at St. Francis College and serves as JPIC Coordinator for his Congregation and on the Council of Religious for the Diocese of Brooklyn.

Sister Deborah M. Borneman, SS.C.M. began working for the NRVC in 2011 and presently serves as the Director of Mission Integration. A Sister of Saints Cyril and Methodius, she served 10 years as vocation director for her community and is currently serving on her congregational leadership team. Sr. Debbie has previous ministerial experience in pastoral care, youth ministry, college campus ministry and immigration advocacy. She has presented on various topics in vocation ministry in Ireland and throughout the United States. Sr. Debbie holds a Master of Divinity degree and a Master of Arts degree in Pastoral Studies from Loyola University, Chicago.  She presents workshops in the United States, Canada, Ireland, and Rome. 

Financial assistance available

To assist NRVC members with their professional development, the Misericordia Scholarship Fund is available. Scholarship funds can be applied to NRVC workshops; however, they do not cover the cost of transportation, accommodations, meals or personal expenses. If you need financial assistance to attend an NRVC workshop, please contact srcharleneh@nrvc.net  for an application.

Workshop terms and conditions

Please read our NRVC terms and conditions for all events and programs.

I found the whole program very helpful. I appreciated the different perspectives from the speakers and the variety of examples provided. Learning about setting boundaries and the specifics about psychological testing and assessment especially helpful. I found all the presenters competent and engaging. Thank You! I didn't have a clue as to what I didn't know - things vital to my role as vocation director. ​

--Sister Vickie Griner, osc

A great experience; it came at a perfect time since I’ve been at this for a few months and a new academic year is starting soon. There’s a lot to digest, but the manual and on-line resources are a Godsend. THANK YOU!

--Brother Larry Schatz, F.S.C.

Being a layperson and new to vocation ministry, I found all aspects of the program helpful. The materials and small group conversation gave me a better understanding of vowed life and the complex role of the vocation director. I was pleasantly surprised at how effective and enjoyable this online format can be. It was so well done. This workshop definitely exceeded my expectations. Thank you! ​

–Ms. Kathryn Davis for the Congregation of Bon Secours

This program surpasses my expectations; I received much more than I was expecting! There is a good balance of prayer, talking and presentations. It covers all the information that we as vocation directors are about to face.

--Brother Ronnie Silva, CSC, from Brazil

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