From a reader:
First of all, thank you for all the work you do for your flock! What a
breath of fresh air good priests are! [And it is good that there
are so many!]
Here’s my question; Can a non-virgin become a nun? I found many
conflicting answers to this online and from what I read, it seemed as
if the Church was hesitant to say definitively either way. It seems as
if good arguments can be made for both answers. And if non-virgins
cannot become nuns, and say a woman who had had sex when she was young, realized later in life, or felt later in life, that she was
called to consecrate her life to Christ, what could she do then? Would
that just be a case of “missing your calling”?
Yes, a non-virgin can become a nun. A non-virgin cannot, obviously, become a consecrated virgin.
We are talking about physical virginity here, by the way, and not some fantasy about sorta kinda deciding to be a virgin again.
A non-virgin can indeed be accepted into religious communities. It has happened all through history.
I have no idea where you got the idea that non-virgins could not be professed members of religious communities.
If you want a good example of this in a good film, try In This House Of Brede with the great Diana Rigg.