The fundamental period of religious formation is the novitiate. In our congregation the novitiate lasts 2 years, the first year the canonical year, being designated for intensive spiritual formation. The novice mistress guides the formation process and instructs the novices in subjects such as the interior life, knowledge of the congregation, its history, spirituality, constitutions, rules, and apostolic works. After the first year of novitiate, the novices go for regency in our convents and begin to work in the various fields of our apostolate together with professed sisters, as part of their training. During the final two months - before the first profession of the vows of obedience, chastity and poverty - the novice returns to an intense period of prayer and recollection.