Book of Order – Chapter 10: Preparation and Training for Life Vowed
On the Preparation and Training of a Candidate for Final Vows in the Holy Order of MANS
After a student has been in the Order for his probationary nine months, or after he has come into the Realization of the SELF and has demonstrated his ability and his sincere desire to serve under this Order, he may apply for the full vows, the lifetime vows of the Order. If he is granted acceptance for these vows by the Esoteric Council, he should then be taken by his Teacher or a priest in good standing and counseled as to the meaning and reality of the vows he seeks to take. Emphasis should be placed upon the relationship of these vows to his daily life as a Brother.
Personal work must be done with the Brother, so that he knows that he is being prepared for a major change in his life. The counseling must be intimate in nature, for the candidate should be examining his soul at this time and preparing himself. This is important, because when a man takes the full vows, he leaves permanently the community of men to enter the community of God. The differences between the two ways of life must be emphasized to him before he takes these vows.
If after proper counseling, the candidate is still desirous of taking the vows, they may be administered to him on the day appointed for the administering of the final vows.
On the day prior to the administration of these vows, the candidate should distribute all worldly goods to his fellows or to the needy or poor. This does not include trusts, inheritances and so forth.
But all the things that he has personally about his person should be disposed of. He should then be provided with a suit, five suits of underwear, five pairs of socks, and good shoes, as well as the toilet articles and his Testament and lesson books. In the case of women candidates, the same applies with allowances for the change in dress.
These things should be provided by the Order through the Center in which the Brother is working. And these things shall be maintained after the vows by the Order. The Brother of course, should be instructed as to how to take care of these articles so that they last.
The materials supplied to the Brother should be as high quality as possible without being extreme, so that the things that he does have will be of lasting value to him, and we do not need to go and continually supply him with these goods.
He will then spend the night prior to the day of his vows in chapel in prayer and meditation. At the conclusion of this time he may have confession if he wishes it, and will then receive his vows in the presence of the other Brothers.
At the conclusion of the vow ceremony the new Brother shall be presented with the robe of the Brothers by his Brothers, similarly to the way in which a new priest is presented with his robe by his fellow priests. He is then granted all the rights and responsibilities of a full Brother in the Holy Order of Mans.
Classes, however, should be administered either privately or in a group to the newly-vowed Brother for at least one month’s time after his vows, once a week, on the meaning and importance and function of himself as a Brother within the Order.
This should not be overlooked, for any reason, regardless of whether he is going on to the priesthood, or is going out into independent work later on as part of his mission; he should know how to function in accord with the position that he holds at that moment. This requires instruction. This requires guidance. And this requires training and study on the part of the Brother and on the part of his superior.