Outreach and Service

A monastery typically chooses one or more works that will serve the Church and the world. Here are some of the works of Saint Meinrad Archabbey:

Seminary and School of Theology

The founding monks of the Swiss Abbey of Einsiedeln were invited to southern Indiana in the 1850s to establish a seminary to train local men as priests

Saint Meinrad Seminary and School of Theology is a graduate school for the formation of priests, permanent deacons and lay ministers. The Seminary forms men for the priesthood and permanent diaconate, and prepares women and men to serve the Church in lay ministry. Students are enrolled from many U.S. and foreign dioceses. 

The Seminary also provides continuing education for priests through its Institute for Priests and Presbyterates. And each summer, our "One Bread, One Cup" program offers conferences focused on Catholic liturgy and faith for high school teens and their adult youth ministers.

Our monks serve in the school as professors, administrators, spiritual directors and in other capacities.   

Parish Assistance

Another of our works also has its roots in our past. Soon after arriving in Indiana, the monks who founded Saint Meinrad began to help in parishes and provide pastoral assistance to the local German-speaking people.

Today the practice of pastoral work continues as monks serve in area parishes and dioceses.

In addition, they serve as chaplains to prisons, the military, religious communities and other educational institutions. Some monks travel around the country giving retreats to parishes and religious groups.

Guest House and Retreat Center

Thousands of guests visit each year to experience the beauty of our liturgy and grounds, to connect with the sacred and to refresh their spiritual lives.

Our Guest House and Retreat Center hosts retreats - during the week and on weekends - throughout the year. Most retreats are given by Saint Meinrad monks.

Guests also come here to spend time in the peace and quiet or to undertake a private retreat.

Oblate Community

The Archabbey sponsors a Benedictine Oblate community. Oblates are lay people who are committed to prayer and service in the spirit of St. Benedict.

Our monks provide formation for the oblates, who bring Benedictine values to life in the world. More than 1,300 oblates from a wide range of backgrounds are affiliated with the monastery. 

Gift Shop

Saint Meinrad operates the on-campus Saint Meinrad Archabbey Gift Shop. The gift shop offers a wide selection of Christian books, gifts, cards, music, monk-made items and gifts for sacramental occasions. 

Abbey Caskets

Abbey Caskets sells handmade wood caskets and cremation urns to the public. Begun in 1999, the venture offers caskets and urns made in our on-site workshop from hardwoods such as cherry, walnut, oak and poplar.

The moderately priced products reflect the monks' values of dignity, reverence and simplicity. All proceeds support Saint Meinrad Archabbey.


Saint Meinrad publishes CareNotes, a series of eight-page color booklets that offer strength, help and healing for those who are hurting. CareNotes provide a wealth of emotional, recovery, health, grief and eldercare support and information. More than 100 million have been sold.

monk serving

Support the work of Saint Meinrad.

Make a Gift Now