Complement can mean complete and compline means to complete the day. It is the last prayer of the day or night prayer. I am thinking of compline because I am a fan of the PBS program “Call the Midwife.” It is based on the memoires of Jennifer Worth who worked as a Nurse-Midwife in the 1950s at Nonnatus House, a residence of Anglican nuns who were also Nurse-Midwives. The nuns and lay midwives provided maternity and public health care to a poor London area after WWII.

The compline is mentioned by the nuns in the show, and they are sometimes depicted in a compline service in the church at the end of the day. They stand together and chant the prayers.

I admire the dedication of all nuns. When I was little I thought of nuns as so stern and perfect. They were without fault. They would not allow themselves to commit any sins. I did not see their humanity.

One of first Nursing positions I had, as a young woman, was at a Catholic hospital in San Francisco. I met a nun who visited our unit. I sat with her in the cafeteria one day and she told me of a recent experience she had when she visited a patient in a Nursing Home. She said the person had loss the use of their hands and expressed their despair to her. The Sister said she had been depressed by it. I had an epiphany then. Nuns can get depressed too. They can have times when they are not strong just like everyone else.

Yet, they keep rededicating themselves to service.



13 thoughts on “SOCS-Compline

  1. Prajakta

    “They would not allow themselves to commit any sins. I did not see their humanity.” – This line… I kept repeating it to myself and realized how much it applies to many people in our lives. Thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Deborah Drucker Post author

      Yes, we can not really see people sometimes if they fit into a stereotype or we can stereotype them. Or there behavior can be misleading, we misinterpret them. ❤


  2. LifestyleswithLia

    What an interesting post and view on the lives of those who dedicate themselves to the religious order. It’s true that sometimes I too view them as super-human being, without fault — but in talking to several nuns and priests in my life, I realize that they have the same emotions, hopes, fears etc. as I do. I admire their dedication to the religious order and to helping people.
    I must admit I’ve never heard of the compline (even though I did 4 years of Catholic school!) — Thank you for enlightening me:-)
    Have a lovely Sunday,

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Deborah Drucker Post author

      I had not heard of compline either until I heard it mentioned on “Call the Midwife.” Some churches do have compline services for the public but as far as I can tell they are usually a couple times a month. Thanks Lia. ❤

      Liked by 1 person



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