A postulant (from
The term is most commonly used in the
The length of time that a prospective candidate remains a postulant may vary depending on the institution, or the postulant's individual situation. Among active religious institutions, it typically lasted 4–6 months. At present, many monasteries have a candidate spend 1–2 years in this stage. During this time, the postulant generally participates as fully as possible in the life of the community, joining the novices and professed members for work and prayer.
Since the candidate is not a formal member of the institution at this stage, it is easier for a man or woman not fully certain about
The term is also sometimes used to describe the ecclesiastical status of a person who has discerned a call to the