God’s wild adventures are always way better than mine!
My name is Dawn Hausmann, from the small town of Brooklyn, Michigan in the Irish Hills.
In 2009, upon returning from missionary work in Bolivia with the Salesians, I felt a strong sense from God that he wanted me to study theology and very specifically, John Paul II’s Theology of the Body. I learned of this theology through the ministry of Christopher West when I was in undergrad at Michigan State University, and I wanted to go deeper to learn the foundations of this great work from JPII. That’s when I came across the Pontifical John Paul II Institute and felt deeply called to trek across the U.S. to study there for two years. It was truly a calling from God to go to the Institute and be formed in a new way of thinking.
Surprisingly, as soon as I got to Washinton D.C., I met a consecrated virgin who became my mentor for two years as I studied at the Institute, worked, and discerned my vocation to become a consecrated virgin. In a couple of my classes at the Institute, I had professors who taught us about the state in life vocations, and they made references to how some men and women were called to be consecrated to Jesus but remain in the midst of the messy world to bring Jesus there. I had chills up and down my arms a few times as they spoke, and I would come to discover, “He’s talking about me! I’m called to live that!”
Over the two years, I felt as if I had just learned for the first time how to think and make sense of the world with God at the center of it all. There were times in class where I was overwhelmed by hearing new truths and contemplating deeper mysteries of God and of the human person.
After those formative years, I returned to Michigan in the spring of 2011 and got a job as the Director of Consecrated Vocations for the Diocese of Lansing. I also petitioned my local Bishop to become a candidate for the vocation of consecrated virginity. In 2019, I was consecrated to a life of virginity as a bride of Christ in the midst of the world. I love my vocation…and especially love my spouse and service to his people.
I still work as a vocation director to this day and love helping discerners come to know their vocation as I meet one-on-one with them and give presentations on the state in life vocations through the lens of JPII’s understanding of the spousal meaning of the body and the gift of self.
A few other activities I’ve enjoyed since finishing studies at the Institute are attending courses at the Theology of the Body Institute and Encounter School of Ministry, DYI projects on the home, and travel to the Holy Land and other countries around the world. Traveling to meet other consecrated virgins in the U.S. and witness other consecrations has been a newfound hobby for me as well. I’ve also been enriched by St. Ignatius’ Rules of Discernment of Spirits and find it a blessing to give retreats and teach on them.
I am ever grateful for the precious gift of the two years that I had at the Institute. God still surprises me with new insights in life that flow from the fruit of my time of formation there. My study at the Institute was more of a formation on learning how to become more fully human on the journey of divinization through the Person of Jesus Christ.