Even if they are not Christians, people in Western cultures are familiar with nuns. Many believe they are part of the Roman Catholic clergy, but this is far from the truth. Not part of the church clergy, some of them are nuns within other religions. Those who serve Christian religious organizations may be Catholic, Orthodox Christian, Jains, Lutheran or Anglicans. They do take vows, but their role within their churches falls short of being ordained clergy members, yet they are considered to be in service to the church and not just part of the congregation.
There are other, non-Christian religions that also have their share of women who serve. These religions include Hindus, Taoists and Buddhist religions. These Eastern religious institutions are very different from those of the Western world, and some nuns are ordained while others hold the same position as their counterparts.