The Sisterhood

TV review by
Melissa Camacho, Common Sense Media
The Sisterhood TV Poster Image
Nun-to-be reality show has occasional iffy language.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.

Positive Messages

It shows some of the process that women must go through and the challenges they face when choosing to enter a Catholic religious order. 

Positive Role Models & Representations

The nuns are very kind and caring but also are clear about the expectations and challenges that come with a life of religious service. Some of the young women are not as clear as the others, but their intentions are good. 

Violence

Some of the young women get emotional, argue, or express a desire to punch someone when frustrated. 

Sex

Abstinence is discussed. 

Language

Words such as "piss" audible; occasional cursing is bleeped. 

Consumerism

Some of the mainstream items the women bring with them include iPhones and Louis Vuitton bags, but the logos are not prominently displayed. 

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Some of the women drink (wine, beer, champagne), but this takes place before their discernment

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that The Sisterhood features young women spending time in convents to explore what they believe is a call to religious service. There is some occasional strong language, some drinking (wine, champagne, beer), and discussions about abstinence. Although the show highlights some of the Catholic traditions and expectations, proselytizing is limited. 

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What's the story?

THE SISTERHOOD is a reality series that follows a group of young women as they spend five weeks in a variety of convents to determine whether they want to become nuns. Stacey, Christie, Eseni, Francesca, and Claire participate in an accelerated discernment process, which is designed to allow people to explore what they believe is their call to serve God by visiting various orders before committing to a life of religious service. The women, who are from deeply religious families, live and pray with the sisters and participate in the specific ministry and service to which the order is dedicated. Throughout the experience, the women learn what it takes to serve, including letting go of dreams of being a wife, mother, and worker in various professions. They must also learn how to focus on their relationship with God without makeup, acrylic nails, and cell phones. Although some progress naturally into it, others find themselves questioning their ability and desire to take vows and be a bride of Christ. 

Is it any good?

The voyeuristic series offers a limited, but interesting, look at what life is like for people who choose to enter a life of religious service. But, although some of the young women appear committed to the discernment process, others seem to treat it more like a boarding school and take issue with things such as wearing the required uniforms, adhering to the curfews, and other requirements. 

No doubt that folks will question why the Catholic church would allow an accelerated discernment, let alone participate in a reality series. But the show's focus is on the way the women react to the experience rather than proselytizing. It also clearly underscores the fact that a life of religious service is not easy and that those who do so must be prepared for the difficult transition.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about what it means to enter a life of religious order. What is a "calling"? Why are people willing to leave everything and everyone behind to enter a religious life of service? What are the benefits of this life? 

  • Do you think this reality show offers an accurate portrayal of what the discernment process is like? 

TV details

For kids who love reality shows

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