Saint Meinrad Archabbey

A catholic monastery devoted to the teachings of St. Benedict

August 2015: August 15-21

On Saturday, we celebrated the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Archabbot Justin served as the principal celebrant. We also enjoyed a fine midday meal with fantastic desserts donated by some of our oblates. Yum!

In his homily at Mass, Archabbot Justin made some poignant remarks about our use of technology in society and compared it to Mary's listening heart: Social media today provides a kind of solitude but not one of communion. Constant information overload dissipates the heart. Listening clears away the distractions of our hearts so Christ can flourish in us. If anything is to be downloaded, it should be an openness to grace. We can look to Mary's model of reflection. Today's Assumption Feast, a mystical truth celebrated, gives us a glimpse of what's in store for us if we ponder God in our hearts.

Br. André baked up some more sweets this week in class in Louisville: cinnamon rolls, caramel pecan rolls and Danishes with all kinds of fillings.

Br. Francis shared this on his blog this week: It's an update on some happenings around the monastery this summer as well as some updates from Br. Francis' work, family visits and monastic travels.

On Monday, we celebrated Fr. Cletus' 97th birthday. In his honor, we had colloquium (talking) at dinner and enjoyed some birthday cake for dessert. Fr. Cletus joined the abbot's table for dinner.

Though Fr. Subprior Guerric is away on sabbatical, we enjoyed colloquium in his honor on Wednesday on his feast day. It was a reminder to pray for him and all our confreres who are way from the monastery.

Fr. Meinrad was the principal Mass celebrant this week, and here are some notes from his homilies this week:

Sunday: Miracles happen for those who have eyes to see. These readings contain the miracles of bread and wine changed to the living bread and wine of Jesus' body and blood. The miracle of Jesus is renewed each time we celebrate the Eucharist.

Those who eat the bread of life will lead lives of joy in this shared meal -- this banquet of wisdom. "Behold what you are; become what you receive," said St. Augustine. The challenge of the Eucharist is taking what we receive and recognizing Christ's presence in others outside the Eucharist.

Tuesday: Gideon is afraid and he questions God. God commissions Gideon to save Israel from the Midianites. Gideon's clan is weak, and he is a nobody. When we are discouraged, do we call upon God in our situation? At times we do not accept the grace of God. Sometimes it is not easy or natural to trust God. In time and prayer and through the Holy Spirit, we will be able to trust God. We won't be afraid when we hear God calling us.

Thursday: The Kingdom of God requests our presence urgently because the Kingdom of God is now. Often times, we put aside the Kingdom of God to attend to other business. Jesus seeks to reverse this attitude in us to help us turn to God, who will never abandon us. We will see God most clearly, Jesus says, in our brothers and sisters who we find hardest to love. This is our choice. Do we accept Jesus' invitation to enter the Kingdom of God now or turn from this invitation?

Br. Peduru will be adding some great talent as assistance to Fr. Pius and Br. Martin, who serve as house refectorians. Archabbot Justin made this appointment this week.

All four of us January novices passed chapter. God willing, we will make temporary profession during First Vespers of the Feast of St. Meinrad in January 2016.

This weekend, Fr. Brendan will be installed as president-rector of Conception Seminary College.

Archabbot Justin received the Fr. Al McKnight Award on behalf of Fr. Cyprian from National Black Catholic Clergy Caucus President Fr. Kenneth Taylor in the monastery's Chapter Room this week.

Finally, our seminary students are making their way back from summer assignments and new seminarian students are arriving this weekend to begin fall studies. Several monks will be back in the swing of teaching and formation. Many monks have been teaching throughout the summer to our lay degree students and permanent deacons.

In closing, we heard a reading from Proverbs this week at Office, and it struck me as a good one to share for pondering: "He who guards his mouth and tongue keeps himself from trouble." 

Each day the monks of Saint Meinrad Archabbey write another page in the long history of Benedictine monks throughout the world. Here are recent events chronicled at Saint Meinrad.