Religious Formation Conference

The Religious Formation Conference (RFC) is a national Roman Catholic organization serving religious institutes of women and men with programs and services for those in the ministry of initial and lifelong formation, and general congregational membership.

Facebook Twitter

Intercongregational Collaborative Novitiate









Click to watch Februray 10th Information Session on this new initiative

Prerequisites and Application

A list of prerequisites and the application form can be accessed by clicking on the files in the upper lefthand side of this page. Applications for the fall 2021 cohort are due May 1, 2021. 

About this initiative

Initial plans developed to date:

  • The intercongregational novitiate will be located in Chicago, close to Catholic Theological Union, in the Hyde Park section of the city.
  • The intercongregational novitiate will be offered on an academic year schedule (beginning in August 2021 and ending in June 2022.) 
  • The novitiate will be open to novices of women’s congregations; application materials and criteria are in the development process.
  • The novitiate program will be offered in English. Exploration into bilingual programming will be made at a future date.
  • The novices will participate weekly in the Intercommunity Novitiate (ICN) program located in the Chicago area.
  • There will be two co-directors for the novitiate.
  • The program of the intercongregational novitiate will focus on the constitutive elements of religious life in partnership with the sending congregations vis-a-vis their foundational responsibility for the transmission of the charism of their community to their novices
  • A Board of Directors will serve as the governance structure for the intercongregational novitiate. Among other policies, they will develop the financial model for the novitiate.


Nancy Gerth, SCN and Corrina Thomas, FSPA will serve as Co-Directors for the new Intercongregational Collaborative Novitiate. These experienced formators will work collaboratively with each other and the Board to launch the new novitiate.

Nancy Gerth, SCN is a Sister of Charity of Nazareth. She is a native of Louisville, KY where she currently resides and serves as her Province’s Formation and Novice Director. Nancy’s ministry experiences include education, social service with the homeless and vocation ministry. She is involved in her congregation’s international vocation and formation committee and several others in the area of initial formation. She enjoys reading, art, home repair and sunshine. She is honored to be part of this initiative and looks forward to its invitation to collaboration. Pictured below, on left.

Corrina Thomas, FSPA is a Franciscan Sister of Perpetual Adoration. She is currently the Novice Minister for her community and lives in Chicago. Corrina was born and raised in India and has been living in the United States for 24 years. Besides formation ministry, her other ministries include spiritual direction, program/retreat director in spirituality centers, and has also worked with victims/survivors of human trafficking. Corrina believes in the future of religious life and the necessity of creating spaces for grace and relationships for newer members. She looks forward to working with the Intercongregational Collaborative Novitiate. Pictured below, on right.

Click here to learn more


Should you have any questions during the application process, please contact either of the Co-Directors: Nancy Gerth, SCN ( or Corrina Thomas, FSPA (  


1525 E. 53rd St. | Suite 716
Chicago, IL 60615
Phone: 773.675.8362
Facebook Twitter

Membership Opportunities

Religious Community Membership
Associate Membership
Individual Membership

Click here