Horrors of life in a Catholic monastery exposed by Charlotte Keckler.
Her parents cried tears of joy and agreed to send her to a Carmelite convent, located in another country. She left home knowing she might never again see her parents. She spent most of her life in the monastery and experienced unimaginable horrors there. By the grace of God, she managed to escape, unlike many others.
After her escape, she heard the message of salvation for the first time and she received the Lord Jesus Christ as her savior. At His prompting, she shared her testimony of life in the monastery, as recorded in the 92-minute video shown below. Charlotte lived in Napa California until she died in 1983 at age 94.
The complete transcript of her testimony is shown below the video and can be freely downloaded or printed here.
Charlotte Keckler’s Testimony:
First of all, I always want to tell folks that I am not giving this testimony because I have any ill feeling in my heart toward the Roman Catholic people. I couldn’t be a Christian if I still had bitterness in my heart. God delivered me from all bitterness and strife one day and made Him self real to me in the power of the Holy Spirit. And so, when I give this testimony, I’m giving it because after God saved me, he delivered me out of the convent and out of bondage to darkness, the Lord laid a burden upon my heart to give this testimony that others might know what plight the convents are. And so as you listen carefully this afternoon, I trust that I’ll not say one thing that will leave any feeling in your heart whatsoever that I don’t carry a burden for the Roman Catholic people. I don’t like the things they do. I don’t agree with the things that they teach, but I covet their souls for Jesus. I’m interested in their souls. I believe that when Jesus went to Calvary, He died that you and I might know Him. And their souls are just as precious as your soul and my soul. So I’m interested.
My Desire to Work for God
First of all as we get into this testimony: Having been born into Roman Catholicism, not knowing anything else, not knowing the Word of God – because we didn’t have the Bible in our home. We had never heard anything about this wonderful plan of salvation. And so, naturally, I grew up in that Roman Catholic home as a child knowing only the catechism, knowing only the teaching of the Roman Catholic Church. And because I loved the Lord, and because I wanted to do something for Him – I wanted to give Him my life – I didn’t know of any other way for a Roman Catholic girl to give her life to God other than by entering a convent.
After going to the confessional box, where naturally I’m under the influence of my Father confessor, the Roman Catholic Priest – his influence over my life – one day I made up my mind, through His influence and one of my teachers in the parochial school that I wanted to be a little sister. At that time I thought of being a sister of the Open Order. And as I went on into this, up until the time I took my White Veil, sixteen and a half years of age, everything was beautiful. I really didn’t have any fear in my heart whatsoever. Everything that was taught to me seemingly along the lines of what I had been taught in the Church before I had entered the convent.
And so one day, after making up my mind to enter the Convent, I remember that particular day, two of the sisters came home with me from school. They were my teachers. They arrived in my father’s home that afternoon, and our Father confessor was in the home likewise. I often say that when I was a little girl, children were seen and not heard. You didn’t talk when you were a child; at least you didn’t in my family in my home, unless you were spoken to. And I remember I listened to them carry on a conversation. And then I moved over close enough to my father to ask him if I could say something. That was a bit out of the ordinary. And he permitted me to talk. And I said, “Dad, I want to go into a Convent.” And I’ll tell you that priest took it up quickly. They already had been influencing me.
My father broke down and began to cry, not because he was sad, but because he was so happy. My mother came over and took me in her arms and she, too, wept tears – she was very happy. Those were not tears of sadness because to think that her little girl was giving her life to the Convent to pray for lost humanity. And naturally, my family was very thrilled about it. And I was, too.
Into the Convent
But anyway I didn’t go for about a year after that. And then the time came when I was to leave and my mother prepared things for me. So I entered the convent. They took me. And they didn’t have a place close enough to my father’s and mother’s home, so I think they took me around a thousand miles away from my home. So I entered a convent boarding school. I lasted about three months being thirteen years of age – just as a girl. I look back on it now, and think… my. Homesick? I was so homesick! Why, my mommy and daddy, they stayed three days with me and then they left. I became so homesick. Naturally, why shouldn’t I? — I was just a baby never away from home. When I was a little girl, you know, I never spent a night away from my mother. And I surely had never gone any place without my family. And naturally there was close ties in my family, and I was very lonely and very homesick. But I’ll never forget after Dad and mother told me, “Good-bye.” And I knew they’d be traveling a long distance away from me. And I had never realized in my heart I’ll never see them again. Naturally I hadn’t planned it like that because I had planned to be a sister of the Open Order.
But if you listen carefully to this portion of the testimony then you’ll understand just why I’m saying some of the things I am saying. Now oftentimes we say the priest selects his material through the confessional box, because at seven years of age I went to confessional. At seven years of age I would always, when I’d come into the church first, first I’d sit there at the feet of a crucifix. I’d go to the Virgin Mary and then at the feet of the crucifix, and I’d ask the Virgin Mary to help me make a good confession… because I was a child and my heart was honest. And I knew that the priest taught us to always make a good confession – keep nothing back – tell everything if I expected absolution from any sin that I might have committed.
And so I would ask the Virgin Mary to help me make a good confession. And I would ask Jesus to help me make a good confession. And, I’ll assure you, after I lived in the convent for a short period of time I had to go on with my schooling — I had just finished the eighth grade. And they promised me to give me a High School education and some college education. But I didn’t get much college. I got mostly just high school training. And they gave that to me all right. I took it under some terrible difficulties and strains and all of that – it was rather difficult. But they gave it to me for which I appreciate very very much. But I’ll assure you, after they they put me through the crucial training that we must go through to become just a little novitiate entering a convent, the training is really, it’s outstanding as far as the nun is concerned, and you’ll know what its all about after you’ve been in there for a little while.
So now I entered the convent. And for just a few minutes we want to tell you just a little bit how we lived – what we eat, how we sleep. If I take you into the convent and tell you about those things, you’ll understand a little bit more about my testimony.
The White Veil
First, as I entered the convent, as just a small child I went on to school, I was being trained. But the day came when I was about fourteen and a half when the Mother Superior began telling me about the “White Veil.” And I didn’t know too much about it. By taking the White Veil, they told me that I would become the spouse or the Bride of Jesus Christ. There would be a ceremony. And I would be dressed in a wedding garment.
And on this particular morning, they told me at nine o’clock they would dress me up in a wedding garment. Now, you’re wondering where that came from, and how they got the wedding clothes for the little nuns. The Mother Superior sits down and writes a letter to my father to tell him how much money she wants. And then, whatever she asks, my father sends it. And she, the little buying sister, goes out and buys the material, and the wedding gown is made by the Nuns of the Cloister. (I’m still Open Order now.)
And of course, whatever she asks — now you say, “Did they spend all of the money for the wedding gown?” Well of course, we don’t know these things at the very beginning of our testimony, but after we live in a convent for a little while, we learn to know they could ask my father for a hundred dollars and he’d send it. They would not use maybe a third of that for the wedding garment. They would keep the rest of it, and my father would never know the difference. Neither did I until I’d lived in a convent for a period of time and I had to make some of the wedding clothes. And then I knew the value of them, and what they cost. And I knew of the money that came in because I was one of the older Nuns.
Well, alright, the time came, of course, when I walked down that aisle and I was dressed in a wedding garment. And you know, in the convent, I used to walk the fourteen Stations of the Cross the fourteen steps that Jesus carried the cross to Calvary, but after I made up my mind to take the White Veil, never again did I walk. I wanted to be worthy. I wanted to be holy enough to become the spouse or the Bride of Jesus Christ. And so I would get down on my knees and crawl the fourteen stations – quite a distance. But I crawled them every Friday morning. I thought it would make me holy. I felt it would draw me closer to God. It would make me worthy of the step that I was going to take. And that’s what I wanted more than anything in the world.
I would like to impress that in your hearts. Every little girl that enters a convent that I know anything about, that child has the desire to live for God. That child has the desire to give her heart and mind and soul to God. Now, many, many people make this remark and we hear it from various types of folks who say, “Only bad women go into convents.” That isn’t true. There are movie stars who go into convents. They’ve lived out in the world and no doubt they are sinners and all of that. But they go in when they’re women. They know what they’re doing. And they go in only because the Roman Catholic Church is going to receive, not only thousands, but yea it will run up into the millions of dollars. And they don’t mind who they take in as they can get a lot of money out of an individual.
But when the woman goes in as just a child – she’s just a child – and she goes in there with her heart and mind and soul just as clean as any child could be. I say that because sometimes we hear a lot of things that are really not true.
Now, after we become the spouse of Jesus Christ – I want you to listen carefully to this, and then you can follow me into the rest of the testimony – we are now looked upon as married women. We are looked upon as married women. We are the spouse or the Bride of Jesus Christ.
Becoming the Bride of Christ
Now, the priest teaches that every little girl that will take the White Veil they’ll become the bride of Christ. He teaches her to believe that her family will be saved. It doesn’t make any difference how many banks they rob, how many stores they rob. It doesn’t make any difference how they drink and smoke and carouse and live out in this sinful way and do all the things that sinners do. It doesn’t make a bit of difference. Still, our family will be saved if we continue to live in the convent and give our lives to the convent or to the Church, we can rest assured that every members of our immediate family will be saved.
And you know that there are many little children that are influenced and enticed to to go into convents because we realize that it will be the salvation for our families. And sometimes, even Roman Catholic family, the children grow up and leave the Roman Catholic Church and go out into the deepest of sin. And so every little girl that enters into the convent is hoping by her sacrificing so much – home and mother and daddy – everything that a child loves – her family will be saved regardless of what sins they commit. And of course we’re children and our minds are immature and we don’t know any better. And it’s so easy to instil things like that into the hearts and minds of little children, and the priest is really very good at it.
And of course we looked upon our priest – our Father confessor – I looked upon him as God. He’s the only God I knew anything about. To me he is infallible. I didn’t think he could sin. I didn’t think that he would lie. I didn’t think that he ever made a mistake. I looked upon him as the holiest of holies, because I didn’t know of God, but I did know the Roman Catholic Priest. And to me, I looked to him for everything that I asked of any of God, so to speak, I believed the priest would give it to me.
And so the day comes and we, all of us now – and as we go on in, I want you to listen carefully, after taking the White Veil – things are beautiful. I’m sixteen and a half years of age. Everyone’s good to me. And I’m living in the convent and I haven’t seen anything yet, because no little girl – we’re not subject to a Roman Catholic Priest until we’re twenty-one years of age. And as we give you this next vow, then you’ll understand – we don’t know about this. This is kept from the little sisters until we’ve taken our Black Veil and then it’s too late.
I don’t carry the keys those double doors, and there’s no way for me to come out. The priests will tell all over the whole United States and other countries that sisters, or Nuns, rather, can walk out of convents when they want to. I spent twenty-two years there; I did everything there was to do to get out. I’ve carried table spoons with me into the dungeon and tried to dig down into that dirt because there are no floors in those places. But I never yet found myself digging far enough to get out of a convent with a table spoon, and that’s about the only instrument – because when we’re using the spade – and we do have to do hard, heavy work – when we use a spade we’re being guarded – we’re being watched by two older Nuns and they’re going to report on it — and I’ll assure you you’re not going to try and dig out with a spade. You wouldn’t get very far anyway, because they built and made those convents, or built those convents, so little Nuns cannot escape. That was their purpose in building them, as they build them. And there’s no way for us to get out unless God makes a way. But I believe God’s making a way for numbers of little girls to come out of the convent.
The Black Veil
Now when the time comes, I think I was eighteen when the Mother began talking to me. I planned to come out, see, after my White Veil. I wanted to be a little nursing sister in the Roman Church. But the Mother Superior – I suppose she was watching my life – I suppose she realized I had much endurance, I had a strong body. And I believe the woman was watching me, because one day she asked me to come into her office. And she began to tell me, “Charlotte, you have a strong body.” And she said, “I believe you have the possibilities of making a good Nun. A Cloistered Nun. I believe you’re the type that would be willing to give up home, give up mother and daddy, give up everything you love out in the world, and the world, so to speak, and hide yourself away behind convent doors. Because I believe you’re the kind that would hide back there and be willing to sacrifice and live in crucial poverty that you might pray for lost humanity.” She said, “I believe you’re the kind that would be willing to suffer.” Because we’re taught to believe, as Nuns, that as we suffer our loved ones, and your loved ones that are already in a priest’s purgatory will be delivered from purgatory sooner because of our suffering.
She knew I was willing to suffer. I didn’t murmur. I didn’t complain. She knew all of that. She’s watching my life, and that’s the reason she began to tell me about the Black Veil. And then, of course, you know, I didn’t know too much about a Cloistered Nun. I didn’t know their lives. I didn’t know how they live. I didn’t know what they’ve done, but, you know, this woman proceeded to tell me.
Now we hear a lot of people try to tell me in the various places that we travel and go – I’ve heard a lot of Roman Catholics try to tell me, “I’ve been in so many Cloisters. I know all about them.” But you know a Roman Catholic can lie to you. And they don’t have to go to Confession and tell the priest about the lie that they’ve told, because they’re lying to protect their faith. They can tell any lie they want to to protect their faith and never go to the confessional box and tell the priest about it.
They can do more than that. They can steal up to forty dollars. And they don’t have to tell the priest about it. They don’t have to say one word about it in the Confessional box. They are taught that. Every Roman Catholic knows it. And every Roman Catholic – you’d be horrified to know how many of them steal up to that amount. And many of them lie. We’ve dealt with them. I’ve dealt with hundreds and hundreds of them. I’ve seen a good many of them fall in the altar and cry out to God to save them. And you know before their saved, they look into my face and hold my hand and lie to me. But after God gets a hold of their heart, then they want to make right what they’ve told me because they realize they’ve lied about it. But as long as they’re Roman Catholic, they’re permitted to lie. And it’s the saddest thing. You can’t expect them to know God, because God does not condone sin.
I don’t care who you are. I don’t believe God condones sin. And I don’t believe He’s going to condone it in the Roman Catholic people, even though they’re being misled and they’re being blinded and led into ways that are going to lead them into a devil’s hell.
I believe that with all of my heart, because I’ve lived in a convent. I know something about how these people live and what they do.
Now the day comes. She told me, “Charlotte, you have to be willing to spill your blood. Jesus shed His upon Calvary.” She said, “You have to be willing to do penance. Heavy penance,” She said, “You have to be willing to live in crucial poverty.”
Now already I’m living in the pit of poverty, but I thought that was going to make me holy, and draw me closer to God, and would make me a better Nun. And so I’m willing to live in that poverty.
Laying in a Casket
And then on this particular morning, she told me what I would be wearing. She said, “You’ll spend nine hours in a casket.” And she explained a number of things to me. That is the most I knew about it. And I didn’t find that out until I had taken my White Veil.
And so, on this particular morning, I’m twenty-one years of age. But sixty days previous to my being twenty-one years of age, I’m going to sign some papers that they place in front of me. And those papers are this. I’m going to sign away every bit of inheritance that I might have received from my family after their death. Of course I signed that over to the Roman Catholic Church. And oftentimes I say the Roman Catholic priests are enticing girls – not only their background, not only their strong bodies, their strong minds and strong wills – but he is enticing girls where mothers and fathers have much property, and they are comfortably fixed with the material things of this life. Why? Because when that child enters the convent they’re going to get a portion of her money – of her father’s money.
And I often say even salvation in the Roman Catholic Church is going to cost you plenty of money. More than you know anything about. And so they don’t mind commercializing off of that child and the inheritance that would have come to her.
A Funeral Shroud Instead of a Wedding Garment
And so on this particular morning I told the Mother Superior, “Give me a little while to think it over.” She didn’t make me do it. No one did. But I thought it over for a couple of years, and then one day I told her. I think I’m going to hide away behind the convent doors, because I believed I could give more time to God. I could pray more. I maybe would be in a position where I could inflict more pain upon my body because we’re taught to believe that God smiles down out of Heaven as we do penance – whatever the suffering might be. And I didn’t know any better, because, I often say, if you could only look into the hearts of little Nuns, if you are a Christian, you would immediately cry out before God in behalf of those little girls, because to me we are heathens. It doesn’t make any difference the amount of education we may have. We are still heathens. We know nothing about this lovely Christ – nothing about the plan of salvation. And we’re living as hermits in the Convent.
And so on this particular morning I come walking down an aisle again, similar to that. And, may I say, on the morning before, I can’t go into it too deep, because I would never be able to cover enough of it so you could understand it, but this morning I’m walking down that aisle, but I don’t have a wedding garment on. I have a funeral shroud. Its made of dark red velvet. And it’s way down to the floor. And I’m walking down that aisle. Now, I know what I’m going to do. The casket is already made by the Nuns of the Cloister – very rough boards, and it’s sitting right out here. And I know when I come down there that I’ll step into that casket and lay my body down. And I’m going to spend nine hours in there. And two little Nuns will come and cover me up with a heavy black cloth we call a heavy drape mortel. And, you know, it’s so heavily incensed that I feel like I will smother to death. And I have to stay there.
Now, I know when I come out of that casket I’ll never leave the Convent again. I know I’ll never see my mother and father again. I’ll never go home again. I’ll always live behind convent doors and when I die my body will be buried there. They told me that. So I knew it even before I done it. Its a great price to pay and then to find out that Convents are not religious orders as we were taught and as we were trained. It’s quite a disappointment to a young girl that’s given her life to God and willing to give up so much and sacrifice so much. I’ll assure you, it was a disappointment.
And so after I spent those nights… You say, “What did you do when you lay in that casket?” What do you think I did? I spilled every tear in my body. I remembered every lovely thing my mother done for me. I remembered her voice. I remembered the gathering around the table. I remembered the times when she would pray with us. I remembered the things that she said to me. I remembered what a marvelous cook she was. Everything, as a little girl growing up in that home, I remembered it, laying in that casket – knowing I’ll never hear her voice again. I’ll never see her face again. I’ll never put my feet under her table again, enjoy her good cooking. I knew all that. And so maybe for four hours I spilled all the tears in my body because it was so hard. And I knew I’d get homesick. I knew I’ll want to see her someday, but I gave it all up. What for? For the love of God I thought. I didn’t know any better.
And I’ll assure you those were nine long hours. And then I seemingly got a’hold of myself, and I thought this, “Charlotte, now you’re going to make the best Carmelite Nun,” because everything I’ve ever done even now that I’m out of the convent I do give my best. I’d try to give everything that I had regardless of what I might do. And so I did in the Convent. I gave the best that I have. And I wanted to be the best Nun that I could possibly be. And the Mother Superior knew that. And, don’t worry, the priest knew all about it, too.
FULL TESTIMONY HERE: https://z3news.com/w/horrors-life-catholic-monastery-exposed-charlotte-keckler/