This is the book cover of "Millennial Nuns: Reflections on Living a Spiritual Life in a World of Social Media" by the Daughters of St. Paul. The book is reviewed by Kathleen Finley. CNS photo/courtesy Tiller Press
This is the book cover of "Millennial Nuns: Reflections on Living a Spiritual Life in a World of Social Media" by the Daughters of St. Paul. The book is reviewed by Kathleen Finley. CNS photo/courtesy Tiller Press
"Millennial Nuns: Reflections on Living a Spiritual Life in a World of Social Media" by the Daughters of St. Paul. Tiller Press (New York, 2021). 221 pp., $19.99.

At first glance, the terms "millennial" and "nuns" wouldn't seem to fit in the same sentence, let alone in the title of a book, but this look into the vocations and lives of nine Daughters of St. Paul shows us women serious about living a rather traditional and contemplative religious life in the midst of social media and other contemporary challenges.

Until reading this reflection on their journeys of faith, this reviewer only had occasional and brief contact with their community, since their missions aren't established much in the Pacific Northwest.

They have always seemed to be bright and joyful young women committed to evangelization in the world of media today, and this portrait of them certainly bears that out.

Whether just graduating from high school or college or grad school, the product of a single-parent home or even with a history of attempted suicide, these young women speak quite openly about what drew them to religious life in community and to the specific charism of the Daughters of St. Paul to spread the Gospel using contemporary media.

Occasionally the tone here gets slightly preachy and perhaps recruiting a bit, but most of it is personal stories that tell about the process of vocation in general.

One quality that comes through loud and clear in these young women is their humanity.

When one of them was asking a nonpracticing Catholic friend of hers what she would be interested in hearing from a nun her own age, the reply was how she has it all together, which stopped the questioner in her tracks.

She inquired whether her friend thought she in fact had it all together.

"Well, maybe not you you, but ... like, as a nun, I guess."

The questioner burst out laughing and replied: "Oh, hon, me me is all I've got. Jesus knew exactly what he was getting when he invited me here. The veil might cover up a few warts, but they're still there."

"Millennial Nuns" shows us young women who have generously answered the call to serve God through the Church in the 21st century. It's a reassuring picture.

Finley is the author of several books on practical spirituality, including "The Liturgy of Motherhood: Moments of Grace" and "Savoring God: Praying With All Our Senses," and previously taught in the religious studies department at Gonzaga University.