Category Archives: Saints

In the footsteps of the saints (VII:8)

5 Feb. 6 June. 6 Oct.
The eighth degree of humility is, for a monk to do nothing except what is authorised by the common rule of the monastery, or the example of his seniors.

A brother asked an Elder: “If I am living together with other brothers and I see something inappropriate, am I to say something?” The Elder replied: “If they are older than you, or of the same age as you, it is better to remain silent, for you will be at rest. In such a circumstance, consider yourself younger than they and remain heedless.

A brother asked Abba Poiemen: “Tell me, how can I become a monk?” The Elder replied: “If you want to find rest, both here below and in the age to come, in every situation say, ‘Who am I?’ and do not judge anyone.”

Someone asked an Elder: “Why can I not live with brothers?” The Elder replied: “Because you do not fear God; for if you were to keep in mind the Biblical story of how Lot was saved in Sodom because he did not condemn anyone, you would cast yourself in the midst of wild beasts and live with them.”

It sometimes happens that a young brother, in the flush of enthusiasm that rightly accompanies a man’s first steps in the monastic life, falls into rash judgment and criticism of his elders. A brother more easily falls into this sin when his head is stuffed full of the beautiful and lofty notions found in books without the breaking of the heart that opens a soul to grace.

Sacrificium Deo spiritus contribulatus; cor contritum et humiliatum, Deus, non despicies.
Here, O God, is my sacrifice, a broken spirit; a heart that is humbled and contrite thou, O God, wilt never disdain. (Psalm 50:19)

More often than not the heart is broken by the experience of failure, humiliation, infirmity, rejection, and loss. A monk thanks God for everything by which he is brought low in his own eyes and in the eyes of others. A monk praises God when it is made apparent that, left to himself, he is capable of nothing. A monk glorifies God when others see his infirmity and point out his failures. A monk rejoices when, because of some sin, he is reduced to nothing and obliged to go to God empty–handed, soiled, and humiliated.

God makes use even of sin, not by willing it but by repairing it when it fragments one dear to Him. Had David not sinned, and sinned grievously, we would not have the great testimonial to grace that is his Miserere. One of the most beautiful commentaries on the Miserere was written by the Florentine Dominican, Jerome Savonarola, whilst awaiting execution in May 1498. The fiery Dominican prayed:

Break my heart in pieces, that, all its sin and all its uncleanness cast out, it may become like a scoured tablet, upon which the finger of God may write the law of His love, in the presence of which no iniquity may find a dwelling place.

A monk is practising the eighth degree of humility when he sees that nothing pleases God more than the sacrifice of a broken heart. A monk is practising the eighth degree of humility when, refusing to judge his elders, he imitates whatever good he sees in them and follows with simplicity and joy the customs they have handed on to him. A monk is practising the eighth degree of humility when he cultivates a love for the saints of our Order, imbibes their doctrine, follows their example, and seeks their intercession.

I sometimes think of the saintly Benedictines of the last century or, at least, of those whose lives are known to us and whose reputation for holiness is not altogether forgotten. The better known of these would be Dom Pie de Hemptinne (1880-1907); Blessed Placido Riccardi (1844–1915); Blessed Fortunata Viti (1827–1922); Blessed Columba Marmion (1858–1923); Mother Mary of Saint Peter Garnier of Tyburn (1838–1924); Brother Meinrad of Einsiedeln (1848–1925); Father Lukas Etlin (1864–1927); Venerable Caterina Lavizzari (1867–1931); Dom John Chapman (1865–1933); Abbot Celestino Maria Colombo (1874–1935); Blessed Ildephonsus Schuster (1880–1954); Oblate Itala Mela (1904–1957); Mother M. Hildegarde Cabitza of Rosano (1905–1959); Dom Eugène Vandeur (1875-1967); Venerable Hildebrand Gregori (1894–1985); and Dom Gérard Calvet of Le Barroux (1927–2008). I mention only these without forgetting the Benedictine Martyrs of Tanzania (1889); of El Pueyo (1936) and of Santo Domingo de Silos (1936); and of Korea (1949–1952).

The seniors of our monastery are not only those of us who have made Solemn Profession and received the Monastic Consecration. Our seniors are all the saints who, down through the ages, have waged a glorious battle under the Holy Rule of Our Father Saint Benedict. Learn to love those who have gone before us, climbing the Twelve Degrees of Humility patiently and one step at a time until they reached “that charity of God which, being perfect, casteth out fear.”

Festinate, for Crist luve

Abbey of Rievaulx

Abbey of Rievaulx

The Cross: A Way of Life
Saint Aelred, the English 12th century abbot of Rievaulx, has long been a dear friend. “Our order”, he wrote, “is the Cross of Christ.” In saying this, Saint Aelred uses the word order to signify, not an institutional organization, but a way of life. For Saint Aelred, the Cross of Our Lord Jesus Christ is the very pattern of monastic life.

The Spacious Peace of Charity
Plagued all his life by bad health, Aelred administered his abbey of more than six hundred monks from the infirmary, often gathering the brethren around his bed for familiar spiritual chats. Saint Aelred used to say:

It is the singular and supreme glory of the house of Rievaulx that above all else it teaches tolerance of the infirm and compassion with others in their necessities. All whether weak or strong should find in Rievaulx a haunt of peace, and there, like the fish in the broad seas, possess the welcome, happy, spacious peace of charity.

Christ, the Dearest Friend of All

Saint Aelred saw friendship not as a threat to community but as the cement of community. For Aelred, every true friendship opens onto the sweet love of Christ, the dearest friend of all. “God is friendship,” he said, “and he who dwells in friendship, dwells in God and God in him.”

The Bruised Reed
One cannot read what Holy Father Benedict says in the Rule concerning the abbot without thinking of Saint Aelred: “Let him keep his own frailty ever before his eyes and remember that the bruised reed must not be broken” (RB 64). Saint Aelred’s Pastoral Prayer reveals a man conscious of his own infirmity and full of confidence in the mercy of Christ:

You know, Lord, my heart. You know that my desire is to devote wholly to their service whatever you have given your servant; to spend it completely for them. You know also that I am ready to be myself wholly spent, poured out, for them. May all I perceive and all I utter, my leisure and my occupation, my thoughts and my actions, my prosperity and my adversity, my life and my death, my health and my sickness, yes all that I am be spent on them, be poured out for them, for whom you yourself did not disdain to be poured out. Grant me, Lord, through your grace that is beyond our understanding, grant that I may bear their infirmities with patience, that I may have loving compassion for them, that I may come to their aid effectively. Taught by your Spirit may I learn to comfort the sorrowful, confirm the weak and raise the fallen. May I be myself one with them in their weaknesses, one with them when they burn at causes of offense, one in all things with them, and all things to all of them, so that I may gain them all. And since you have given them this blind leader, this unlearned teacher, this ignorant guide, if not for my sake then for theirs teach him whom you have made to be their teacher, lead him whom you have bidden to lead them, rule him who is their ruler.

His Last Words
Saint Aelred’s biographer and friend, Walter Daniel, describes the abbot’s death. Saint Aelred’s last words were, “Festinate, for Crist luve.” Walter Daniel explains: “He spoke the Lord’s name in English, since he found it easier to utter, and in some way sweeter to hear in the language of his birth.” “Festinate, for Crist luve.” Hasten, for Christ’s love! I want to make Saint Aelred’s words at the hour of his death my own as I approach the adorable mysteries of Christ’s Body and Blood. Holy Father Saint Aelred, obtain for us today a threefold grace: willingly to go to Christ our Physician, tenderly to love Christ our Friend, and fervently to adore Christ our God.

Elizabeth Ann Bayley Seton: A Eucharistic Saint

Mother%20Seton%27s%20Holy%20Redeemer.jpgJanuary 4
Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton, Widow and Religious

William Magee Seton gave this lithograph of Christ the Redeemer to his beloved wife, Elizabeth Ann Seton, sometime between 1774 and 1803. Its Eucharistic theme prophetically reflected the profound devotion to the Most Holy Eucharist that would characterize her piety as a Catholic. Below is a photograph of a copy of a variant of the Memorare handwritten by Elizabeth Ann Seton. At the end of text she added the touching plea, “Love me, my Mother.

The Italian Experience
The conversion of Elizabeth Ann Bayley Seton began in 1803 while she, a twenty-nine year old widow with one of her five children, were the guests of the Filicchi family in Livorno, or Leghorn, Italy. The Catholic Filicchis, Antonio and his wife Amabilia, offered her a gracious hospitality and unfailing emotional support in a time of crisis. In one of Signora Filicchi’s prayer books, Mrs. Seton came upon the text of Saint Bernard’s Memorare; she found in the Virgin Mary the tenderness and the pity of a mother. “That night,” she writes, “I cried myself to sleep in her heart.”

memorare_detail.jpgThe Tabernacle
The Filicchi home contained a private chapel where the Blessed Sacrament was reserved. Elizabeth was drawn to the tabernacle. Even before her mind had been instructed in the mysteries of the Catholic faith, her heart recognized the living presence of the Lord in the Most Holy Eucharist. Her American Protestant sensibility was perplexed and, yet, she could not deny her heart’s fascination with the Lamb of God hidden beneath the sacramental veils.

Return to New York
Elizabeth’s long personal memoir, The Italian Journal, recounts the intimate details of her inner struggle and conversion to Catholicism. Elizabeth and her ten year old daughter, Anna Maria, returned to New York on June 3, 1804, accompanied by Antonio Filicchi — a man to whom Elizabeth had become deeply attached. He had become for her a friend and a spiritual counselor.

Reception into the Catholic Church
In spite of the hostility of her family and the sneering disapproval of New York society, Mrs. Seton made her profession of faith as a Catholic in the old Saint Peter’s Church on Barclay Street in Lower Manhattan on March 14, 1805. The Reverend Matthew O’Brien received her into the Catholic Church. She returned home feeling, in her own words, “light of heart and cool of head, the first time these many months.” She asked Our Lord to wrap her heart “deep in His open side,” or “lock it up forever in His little Tabernacle.” Two weeks later, she received her First Holy Communion. The Divine Dweller of the tabernacle came to dwell in her heart. The rest of Elizabeth Ann Seton’s life is well known: her sufferings from the rampant anti-Catholic prejudice in New York; her move to Baltimore; the beginnings of an American Sisterhood modeled after Saint Vincent de Paul’s Daughters of Charity.

What Dost Thou Seek?
In more than one way, the spiritual journey of Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton resembles that of the two disciples of John the Baptist in the Fourth Gospel. Magnetized by the mystery of the tabernacle, it was as if she heard an inward voice saying, “Elizabeth, behold the Lamb of God.” Jesus, turning His Eucharistic Face to her, said, “What dost thou seek?” “Master,” she answered, “where dwellest thou?” And He replied with an infusion of the love of His Eucharistic Heart, saying, “Come and see.”

Elizabeth obeyed. She came to the one, holy, catholic, and apostolic Church. She submitted to the authority, teaching, and care of the Successor of Peter and of the bishops in communion with him. In the words of the Gospel, “She came, and saw where He abode, and she stayed with Him that day,” and not that day alone, but every day until her death at the age of forty-six on January 4, 1821.

A Eucharistic Saint
Elizabeth Ann Seton was, more than anything else, a Eucharistic soul. She was converted by the Eucharist. Her first instructions in the Catholic faith emanated from the silence of the tabernacle. As she went forward, following the Lamb of God wheresoever it pleased Him to lead her, Eucharistic adoration marked her spiritual journey more and more until, in the final years of her life, she was often seen in ecstatic adoration of the Real Presence.

The Errors of Americanism
Paradoxically, it is this thoroughly American saint, who, by her devotion to the Mother of God, her attachment to the Mystery of the Eucharist, and her obedience to the Chair of Peter, offers the antidote to the errors of “Americanism,” condemned by Pope Leo XIII in 1899.

The underlying principle of these new opinions, declared the Pope, is that, in order to more easily attract those who differ from her, the Church should shape her teachings more in accord with the spirit of the age and relax some of her ancient severity and make some concessions to new opinions. Many think that these concessions should be made not only in regard to ways of living, but even in regard to doctrines which belong to the deposit of the faith. They contend that it would be opportune, in order to gain those who differ from us, to omit certain points of her teaching which are of lesser importance, and to tone down the meaning which the Church has always attached to them. It does not need many words, beloved son, to prove the falsity of these ideas if the nature and origin of the doctrine which the Church proposes are recalled to mind.

Bound in Fellowship With the Chair of Peter
In the same letter, addressing the problems of Americanism, Pope Leo XIII, offers what is, to my mind, a most fitting commentary on Elizabeth Ann Seton’s conversion to the Church built upon the rock of Peter:

The true church is one, as by unity of doctrine, so by unity of government, and she is catholic also. Since God has placed the center and foundation of unity in the chair of Blessed Peter, she is rightly called the Roman Church, for “where Peter is, there is the church.” Wherefore, if anybody wishes to be considered a real Catholic, he ought to be able to say from his heart the selfsame words which Jerome addressed to Pope Damasus: “I, acknowledging no other leader than Christ, am bound in fellowship with Your Holiness; that is, with the chair of Peter. I know that the church was built upon him as its rock, and that whosoever gathereth not with you, scattereth.”

22 December, O REX GENTIUM

St Jean–Gabriel PerboyreThe connection between this O Antiphon and the “Doctrinal Note on Some Aspects of Evangelization,” published eleven years ago (3 December 2007) by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, prompted me to illustrate my reflection with pictures of missionary martyrs: Saint Jean-Gabriel Perboyre, Saint Théophane Vénard, and Don Andrea Santoro.

O Rex Gentium
O King of the Gentiles,
and the Desired of all nations (Ag 2:8), the Cornerstone, (Is 28:16) who makest both one (Eph 2:14). Come, and bring wholeness to man whom thou formedst of clay. (Gen 2:7).

The Desired of All Nations Shall Come
Today we lift our voices to Christ, calling him King of the Gentiles and the Desired of all nations. The O Antiphon draws upon the second chapter of the prophet Aggeus. With the temple still in ruins after the Babylonian exile and the project of rebuilding it daunting, Aggeus speaks a word of comfort to Zerubbabel, the governor; to Joshua, the high priest; and to all the remnant of the people:

Take courage, O Zerubbabel, says the Lord; take courage, O Joshua, son of Jehozodak, the high priest; take courage, all you people of the land, says the Lord; work, for I am with you, says the Lord of hosts, according to the promise that I made you when you came out of Egypt. My Spirit abides among you; fear not. For thus says the Lord of hosts: Once again in a little while, I will shake the heavens and the earth and the sea and the dry land; and I will shake all the nations — and here the Vulgate translation used by the liturgy differs from the Hebrew text — and the Desired of all nations shall come; and I will fill this house with splendour, says the Lord of hosts. (Ag 2:4-8)

St Théophane VénardThe antiphon uses but one phrase from this passage: the Christological title “Desired of All Nations,” but in order to grasp the significance of the title we must listen to all of Aggeus’ message of comfort and hope, repeating it, praying it, and lingering over it until it inhabits us.

Truth, Beauty, Goodness
By calling the Messias the “Desired of all nations,” Scripture and the Sacred Liturgy recognize the aspirations of every nation and culture towards the good, the true, and the beautiful, as aspirations towards Christ. In every culture there are traces of a mysterious preparation for the Gospel. Every time a human being seeks the splendour of the truth, the radiance of beauty, the purity of goodness, he seeks the Face of Christ, the “Desired of all nations.” When the missionary Church proclaims Our Lord Jesus Christ, she is proclaiming the “Desired of all nations.”

To Proclaim Jesus Christ
Without knowing His adorable Name, without having seen His Face, without having been told of His Heart opened by the soldier’s lance, the nations of the earth desire Christ and wait for Him, insofar as they desire and wait for truth, beauty, and goodness. The missionary task of Christians is to preach the Name of Jesus, to point to His Face, and to bear witness to His pierced Heart, saying, “Here is the truth, here is the goodness, here is the beauty you desire: Jesus Christ, the Son of God, born of the Virgin Mary, crucified, risen from the dead, ascended into glory, and coming again.” In an important “Doctrinal Note On Some Aspects of Evangelization,” the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith reaffirmed the Church’s commitment to the missionary mandate received from Our Lord. First, the document identified the problem:

There is today . . . a growing confusion which leads many to leave the missionary command of the Lord unheard and ineffective (cf. Mt 28:19). Often it is maintained that any attempt to convince others on religious matters is a limitation of their freedom. From this perspective, it would only be legitimate to present one’s own ideas and to invite people to act according to their consciences, without aiming at their conversion to Christ and to the Catholic faith. It is enough, so they say, to help people to become more human or more faithful to their own religion; it is enough to build communities which strive for justice, freedom, peace and solidarity. Furthermore, some maintain that Christ should not be proclaimed to those who do not know him, nor should joining the Church be promoted, since it would also be possible to be saved without explicit knowledge of Christ and without formal incorporation in the Church.

That sums up the errors that are prevalent today, and explains the sad decline of missionary zeal within the Church. By calling Christ “the Desired of all nations” in today’s Great O Antiphon, the Church reaffirms her mission to make Him known. The document goes on to say:

The Church’s commitment to evangelization can never be lacking, since according to his own promise, the presence of the Lord Jesus in the power of the Holy Spirit will never be absent from her: “I am with you always, even until the end of the world” (Mt 28:20). The relativism and irenicism prevalent today in the area of religion are not valid reasons for failing to respond to the difficult, but awe-inspiring commitment which belongs to the nature of the Church herself and is indeed the Church’s “primary task”. “Caritas Christi urget nos – the love of Christ impels us” (2 Cor 5:14): the lives of innumerable Catholics bear witness to this truth.

Man Fashioned Out of the Clay of the Earth
For the petition of today’s Great O Antiphon the liturgy reaches all the way back to the second chapter of Genesis. We beg Christ to come and “save man whom he fashioned out the clay of the earth” (Gen 2:7). We ask to be refashioned, reshaped, reformed by Christ, the Word through whom all things were made. It is a bold petition: “Come, Christ, make me over, change me, reshape all that is misshapen in me.”

In the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, Our Lord answers our prayer. The Holy Ghost is sent in every Mass to change not only bread and wine into the Body and Blood of Christ, but to change us, to reshape all that is misshapen, to restore to wholeness all that is fragmented, and to beauty all that has fallen into unloveliness. In this is the aim of all missionary activity: the recovery of unity not only within ourselves, but also among us, and among all the nations of the world, in the one Mystical Body of Christ. Veni, et salva hominem, quem de limo formasti. Come — come in the Holy Mysteries of the Altar — “and bring wholeness to man whom Thou didst fashion from the dust of the earth.”

Dies Natalis of Father Lukas Etlin, O.S.B.

Lukas_Etlin.jpgA Friend in Heaven
December 16th, is the dies natalis (heavenly birthday) of the Servant of God, Father Lukas Etlin, O.S.B., a monk of Conception Abbey. In 2008 I made a novena to Father Lukas beginning on November 16th. On the evening of the  feast of the Immaculate Conception, 8 December 2008, I was given a picture of Father Lukas. I slipped it into the pocket of my habit before driving home. Less than fifteen minutes later I was the astonished and grateful survivor of a terrible automobile crash. No bumps, bruises, scratches, aches, or pains.

From Switzerland to Missouri
Father Lukas was born Alfred Etlin, on February 25, 1864 in Sarnen, the capital of Canton Obwalden in the foothills of the Swiss Alps. In 1886 young Alfred left the natural beauty of his homeland for the new monastery founded by Abbot Frowin Conrad in Conception, Missouri. Clothed in the Benedictine habit, Alfred became Frater Lukas. He made monastic profession on November 13, 1887 and was ordained a priest on the feast of the Assumption, August 15, 1891. He offered his First Mass at the Benedictine Convent of Perpetual Adoration in Clyde, Missouri on the Feast of Saint Bernard, August 20, 1891.

After his ordination, Father Lukas, a gifted artist, was assigned to continue his collaboration in the decoration of the abbey church. Some of the magnificent frescoes that still adorn the basilica of Conception Abbey are the work of Father Lukas.

On March 17, 1892, Father Lukas was named chaplain to the Benedictine Sisters at Clyde, Missouri. For some time he walked two miles each way to offer daily Mass at the convent. After being caught in dangerous snow storm, Abbot Frowin and the Mother Prioress of Clyde decided that Father Lukas should reside at the convent.

Apostle of the Eucharist
It was there that Father Lukas grew in his already burning love for the Heart of Jesus, for the Most Holy Eucharist, and for the Mother of God, and began to share the fruits of his contemplation He was instrumental in persuading the Sisters at Clyde to embrace a more monastic way of life with primacy given to the worthy celebration of the Divine Office and to perpetual adoration of the Blessed Sacrament. In May 1905 he launched his printing apostolate with the publication of Tabernacle and Purgatory. Its aim was clear: “that the knowledge of the Most Holy Eucharist may be increased and the love toward It enkindled more and more in the hearts of the faithful.” Father Lukas’ personal life was marked by long periods of Eucharistic adoration, both by day and by night.

Devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary
In his office, Father Lukas worked in the presence of an almost lifesize painting of Our Lady holding the Child Jesus, Who is pointing to His Heart. Often Father Lukas would pray aloud, addressing the Mother of God. He would kneel before her image to ask for guidance, and kiss it with tender devotion.

One-Man Relief Program
With the onset of World War I, Father Lukas became the Apostle of Charity. Alarmed by the famine that afflicted Europe after the armistice in 1918, he launched a one-man relief program, and distributed hundreds of thousands of dollars, solicited from among his American readers of Tabernacle and Purgatory, to monasteries, convents, seminaries, orphanages, and schools. He called his program, Caritas.. By his death in December 1927, Father Lukas had collected and disbursed over two million dollars to institutions in thirty-two countries, including Russia and China.

In his spiritual conferences to the Benedictine Sisters at Clyde, Father Lukas insisted on the Most Holy Eucharist as the heart of the Christian and monastic life. This was the fruit of his own experience. He invited them to enter into the mystery of the Holy Sacrifice by offering themselves to the Father, per ipsum, et cum ipso, et in ipso — through Christ, with Him, and in Him. The perpetual adoration of the Most Blessed Sacrament was, for Father Lukas, intrinsically linked to the Holy Sacrifice. He was, before all else, a faithful priest-adorer of Christ present in the Sacrament of His Love.

Zeal for the Liturgy
Gifted with a refined artistic sensibility, Father Lukas made himself the zealous promoter of Gregorian Chant in the liturgy. He saw to it that the Sisters at Clyde were well prepared to sing the Mass and Divine Office with dignity and beauty.

Death on a Highway
On December 16, 1927, Father Lukas offered Mass at the convent in Clyde, and at 8:30 a.m. taught a religion class to the girls of St. Joseph’s Academy. Among other things, he said to them:

We must at all times be ready to die. We should not wish to live even a single day longer than God wills. Should death overtake us in an automobile, also then we should accept it with resignation to the will of God.

Eight hours later, Father Lukas lay dead at the side of the highway in Stanberry, Missouri, the victim of an automobile accident. At the moment of the crash, he was heard to cry out, “O Jesus, Jesus!” When help came, Father Lukas was already dead, with a piece of his rosary held fast in his hand.

Father Lukas, An Intercessor
Since his death, Father Lukas has obtained numerous graces and favours for those who have recourse to his intercession.

O God, who didst bestow upon Thy faithful servant, Father Lukas Etlin, a tender love for the Virgin Mother of Thine Only–Begotten Son and a most fervent zeal for the adoration of the Sacrament of His Holy Body and Blood, grant us, we beseech Thee, through the prayers of Father Lukas, the grace that we now implore of Thy merciful goodness. [Intention] Deign, in this way, to manifest, for the joy and consolation of Thy Church, that even as Father Lukas pleased Thee by the virtues of his monastic and priestly life on earth, so now does his intercession win Thy favour in heaven. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Support the monks of Silverstream Priory:

Situated amidst pasture land and forest in the eastern reaches of County Meath, Silverstream Priory was founded in 2012 at the invitation of the Most Reverend Michael Smith, Bishop of Meath, and canonically erected as an autonomous monastery of diocesan right on 25 February 2017. The property belonged, from the early 15th century, to the Preston family, premier Viscounts of Ireland and Lords of Gormanston. In 1843 Thomas Preston (1817-1903), son of Jenico Preston, the 12th Viscount (1775-1860), built what today is Silverstream Priory.

Silverstream Priory is a providential realisation of the cherished project of Abbot Celestino Maria Colombo, O.S.B. (1874–1935), who, following the impetus given by Catherine–Mectilde de Bar in the 17th century, sought to establish a house of Benedictine monks committed to ceaseless prayer before the Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar in a spirit of reparation. The community of Silverstream Priory holding to the use of Latin and Gregorian Chant, celebrate the Divine Office in its traditional Benedictine form and Holy Mass in the “Usus Antiquior” of the Roman Rite. Praying and working in the enclosure of the monastery, the monks of Silverstream keep at heart the sanctification of priests labouring in the vineyard of the Lord. They undertake various works compatible with their monastic vocation, notably the development of the land and gardens, hospitality to the clergy in need of a spiritual respite, scholarly work, and publishing.

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